Friday, February 8, 2019

Red Hot on the Inside: Use Your Words

Today’s post is a monthly writing challenge. If you’re new here, this is how it works: participating bloggers picked 4 – 6 words or short phrases for someone else to craft into a post. All words must be used at least once. All of the posts will be unique as each writer has received their own set of words. That’s the challenge, here’s a fun twist; no one who’s participating knows who got their words and in what direction the recipient will take them. Until now.


Use Your Words, a multiblogger writing challenge | www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics


At the end of this post you’ll find links to the other blogs featuring this challenge. Check them all out, see what words they got and how they used them.
I'm using: red ~ hardwood ~ dog ~ heel ~ destroyed
They were submitted by Minette of Southern Belle Charm.

                          
It's been cold. How cold was it? So cold the news felt less like information and more like dire warnings and climbing mortality numbers. Whipping winds that had me out front at 5am chasing my trash cans down the street in the frigid cold. My recycle bin, which had been full when I put it at the curb the night before was now flying through the air, empty. It was so windy I wouldn't have been surprised if it had fallen on a wicked witch wearing ruby slippers. I could use a bejeweled pair of red heels (who couldn't?) But I digress). No, no new shoes for me, that sucker bounced off the house and nearly took me out.
 
Each day I thought it would get better and each day it got worse. Zero degrees, ten below, 20 below and more.

I was actually worried because they were saying not to be outside more than a few minutes at a time. I mean, if I had a dog, I swear I'd let him pee in the house. Some things, man or beast, should just not be frozen off. And PurDude had a 15 minute walk to work from where he lives. Poor kid, I texted him daily. First telling him to wear a scarf over his mouth to breathe into because they were reporting that it was so cold that breathing too much of the frigid air can actually freeze your lungs. Then I wanted him to wear his ski goggles because the next day they were reporting that your eyeballs could be frozen, destroyed. Your eyeballs? Really? Maybe not. Apparently the consensus on Google is that it actually cannot happen. I must have been watching fake news.

I refused to leave the house (yeah, I can do that, groceries are overrated) and spent a lot of time curled up on the couch wrapped in a throw. Like a mummy. I had the fireplace going 24/7 and knew if I ran out of wood there was a chance I'd be ripping up our hardwood floors. Even with the heat on and the fireplace going and the warm throw, I swear I could still feel the whipping winds. 

A hot meal made it to the table each night, not only because I took pity on Hubs, who had to venture out to work each day, but because warming us up on the inside seemed like as good a plan as staying warm on the outside. On the coldest night, I pulled out some red hot sausages and put together my Hot Sausage Mostacchioli Casserole.  

The conversation after dinner went something like this:

Hubs: My stomach's on fire.
Me: You're welcome.


Hot Sausage Mostaccioli Casserole is comfort food, Italian style, with a bit of a kick Pasta, sausage and vegetables are baked in a creamy marinara sauce and topped with melted cheese. | Recipe developed by www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #dinner

Hot Sausage Mostaccioli Casserole


Here are links to all the other Use Your Words posts:




Hot Sausage Mostaccioli Casserole
                                               ©www.BakingInATornado.com

Ingredients:
12 oz mostaccioli pasta
1 small onion, sliced
1 green pepper, sliced
8 oz mushrooms, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 1/2 cups marinara (my homemade recipe is HERE)
1 # hot italian sausages (about 4 sausages)
8 oz mascarpone cheese
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions:
*Heat the marinara in a pot over medium heat until hot. Turn the heat down so it doesn't boil.
*Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 X 13 baking pan. Spread 1/2 cup marinara into the bottom of the prepared baking pan. 
*Cook the mostaccioli to al dente. Drain and set aside.
*Spray a large skillet with non-stick spray. Cook and stir the onion, pepper, mushrooms and garlic over medium heat until soft. Remove from the skillet and place in the pot with the marinara.
*Pierce the sausages and cook in the same skillet over medium heat, turning now and then, until the sausages are cooked. Remove to a plate and slice. 
*In a large bowl, gently mix the mostaccioli, marinara, sausages, mascarpone and parmesan. Pour into the baking pan and sprinkle with the mozzarella. Cover.
*Bake for 30 minutes. Carefully remove the cover and bake for another 10 minutes.

23 comments:

  1. Karen!!!! How fun it is to come to your blog again after some, uh, 36 months or so. I liked your use of Minette's words, and I feel ya. There is nothing good about chasing after refuse bins. I do however, have a few nominees if you're looking for a victim for one of those things to land on. LOL. Mostaccoili sounds delicious and perfect for this ridiculously cold weather. <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Michele, I am not at all surprised that my first comment today is from you. I may have mention a time (or a hundred) how it makes the blogging world brighter having you back in it. You were the first blogger ever to befriend me, I'll never forget that. Your honest and funny voice has truly been missed. <3

      Delete
    2. Thank you, friend. It felt wonderful to be a part of again. Terrifying as usual, but wonderful <3

      Delete
  2. Great use of the words and I wouldn't have been surprised if eyeballs froze last week! -51 with the windchill in Chicago. Brrr does not even begin to describe it. whew, so thankful we just had to contend with 20's. Yesterday was 81 and 53 today. What a crazy year it has been and it's only Feb. 8th.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, we were below zero, then in the 50s, today we're back in the teens. Crazy weather, I've had enough.

      Delete
  3. It got down to about 25 here a couple of nights and I thought I was freezing! I've become a wimp to the cold temperatures. Yesterday it was 80 here!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 25 IS freezing! This is no year for cold weather whips, I'll tell you that much. Come on Spring!

      Delete
  4. Brings a whole new meaning to "C'mon Baby light my fire"! ;)
    And well done with those words!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Perfect for my hubbie and cold weather - me and my tender stomach, not so much. I would do perhaps 25% hot and 75% mild, but, oh that mascarpone cheese! I think that would make the entire dish!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It would be perfect for you both if you did 50% hot sausage and 50% mild sausage, mixed everything but the sausage, divided it into 2 bowls before adding the sausage, then cooking it in 2 smaller (8 X 8) baking dishes. Then you'd both have your own dinner and your own leftovers.
      And yes, I was going to go with ricotta but I'm so glad I did mascarpone instead, it made it so creamy!

      Delete
  6. I can really relate to your post, as we, too, have had to endure abnormally cold weather this winter. Thx for the recipe. Casseroles are among my fav comfort food.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you try it, be sure to let me know what you think.

      Delete
  7. I don't like anything that is red hot but I did like this post

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you liked the post, and you can always just use mild sausage in the recipe if the rest of it appeals to you.

      Delete
  8. Guessing you don't want to know we're in the low 80's down here? I didn't think so... Going to try this with milder sausage, looks good!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Enjoy those 80s for us both. Hope you like the recipe with the milder sausage.

      Delete
  9. It got down to 30 here which is cold for Southerners. I really don't think we could hang in those kind of temps.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I love how you intertwined the cold with your post. Stay warm.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not going to stay warm again today, but hoping that's somewhere in my near future.

      Delete
  11. I have been following you guys' freezing spell. It's good to know that there are creative ways out there that help keeping warm-ish.
    Should I even tell you that right now in Europe we're enjoying some sunny, blue sky 50°F pre-spring days? There's hope!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There may be hope for you, but not so much here. Expecting more snow today and possible rain and ice later in the week. {{sob}}.

      Delete

Warning: Comment at your own risk. I have Comment Moderation, meaning I approve all comments before they show up here. So go ahead, I'm not scared!