First, prepare for your meal of love and put your beautiful, expensive cashews in a big bowl and leave them there overnight while you dream of their beautiful, exquisite form. Maybe write a sonnet about them.
It is the next day!
Writer, you are in love with your story and therefore you are in love with life so go put that stove on 400.
Line a pan with tinfoil or aluminum foil. Wait. What is it? When did this word change? Resist the urge to look it up and just use the shiny stuff.
Look at all your adorable ingredients. They are the character in the story called DINNER. Love them up. Maybe kiss them quickly. Make sure nobody is watching
Put all the tomatoes, onions, garlic, olive oil, salt, and pepper on top of the lined baking sheet. ADORE THEM!
Find the olive oil and drizzle its juice all over the vegetables on the sheet. Do not breathe heavily. This is not porn. This is dinner.
Feel guilty that your brain even went there.
Put it in the oven and shut it. Are you feeling ashamed? It's okay. It's all behind the oven door now. Keep it all back there, hidden, for 20 minutes.
Take the pan out. Skin the tomatoes. Dear God! What have you become? It started out so lovingly and now you are skinning tomatoes! YOU ARE A WRITER NOT A DEMON! YOU ARE NO HANNIBEL! Take no pleasure in this step. Also be careful not to burn your fingers.
Cook pasta according to its directions.
Hide it all in the oven again for ten minutes and breathe deeply. Practice your mantras. Repeat after me, "I cook with love. I cook with love. I cook with love."
You know those cashews you've been drowning all night? Put them in a blender. Add the vegetables and their juices. Blend. Blend it until smooth until there's no damn evidence that these things were once separate entities. Add salt.
Mix it up with the pasta. Eat it. Check for cameras.
I am the NYT and internationally-bestselling author of children's books, which include the NEED series, FLYING series, TIME STOPPERS series, DEAR BULLY and other books. I like hedgehogs and puppies and warm places. I have none of these things in my life.
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