Hot Sausage Pasta

There are a few staples that are at all of my family’s gatherings. One thing is stuffed hot cherry peppers. I just can’t do it! I don’t know, maybe I’m being too hard on my self but my cousin makes them perfect every time and mine just don’t taste the same.

Well one part of making stuffed hot cherry peppers is marinating the peppers in olive oil. Well now that I have tried to make the peppers a few times, I have a pretty good amount of olive oil that has been soaking in hot peppers for a few months. YUM!

So because I hate to waste anything, especially food, I have been finding recipes that I could use the hot oil. Pizza is a big one. Amazing! But then I thought it would be just as good in pasta with hot sausage. So yep, the hot oil at least has been good for something.

So what you have to do to make the hot oil is buy a jar of hot cherry peppers and drain the marinade that comes with them. Then you fill the jar up with olive oil, salt and pepper and I add a few hot pepper flakes because I like spice. Then you let it sit in the refrigerator. For a long time. Like a month a long time. The olive oil will coagulate, but I think it’s fine. (I mean I don’t actually know if that’s ok, but hey, I’m not dead.)

Then you eat the peppers (obvi) or just toss them if they are too spicy for your liking. I put the actual peppers on homemade pizza and that was amazing. Spicy peppers with spicy oil, a little bit of cheese and pizza dough! Perfection.

Check out the recipe below for what I did with the hot oil to make this perfect pasta.

4-6 Tablespoons of hot oil (see above for directions)
1 lb linguine
2 hot Italian sausage links
2 cups of arugula
Red pepper, black pepper and salt to taste

  1. Boil pasta per directions on the box.
  2. Heat saucepan to medium high temperature. While pan is heating up, remove the sausage from the casing and discard the casing. Add the sausage to the hot pan and cook thoroughly, chopping sausage into small sizes.
  3. Once sausage is cooked all the way through add hot oil and red pepper flakes to taste.
  4. Drain pasta and add to sauce pan, lowering the heat to medium. Mix pasta in with oil.
  5. Allow flavors to cook together for 5 minutes.
  6. Add arugula, mix and enjoy. 

Favorite Spring Recipes

Happy second day of spring! All I have been thinking about is flowers, hiking, kayaking and yummy summer food. These past few weeks have been super busy but I finally see a light at the end of the long tunnel. I feel like we have been going non stop since before the Christmas season and spring is going to be a time to veg and relax… well a little bit.

This past weekend we finally got to get out of the house and be outdoors. Saturday night we spent at Disneyland where they are right in the middle of featuring the Main Street Electrical Parade. If you live local, go check it out before it’s gone this June. It was a big throw back to my childhood. I remember seeing it in Disney World when I was a kid, and seeing the same parade, and floats as an adult was really cool and definitely gave me a whole other appreciation for this piece of Disney magic.

Sunday morning we woke up early and headed down to Newport Beach to do a little whale watching. More on that later but the being out on the water was definitely what the doctor ordered. And we even got to hang out with some grey whales and dolphins.

Now that spring is here, I’ve been craving lighter meals. There’s something about the nice weather that makes me want to eat lighter and healthier. So today I put together a list of my favorite food I have featured on my blog that remind me of summer. Enjoy! 

Cabbage, Spinach, Mozzarella Salad  Chicken Picatta

Grilled Beet & Goat Cheese Salad

Mediterranean Spaghetti

Homemade Bruschetta 

This weekend I’m working both days, but Sunday morning we are doing something that I have been looking forward to for a long time. Hints: we will be on the water and it involves an extremely oversized animal. Keep an eye out on Instastory to see what we are up to.

 

Buffalo Chicken Pasta

I am actually pretty excited about this Super Bowl this year. I am a Giants fan & Chris is a huge Steelers fan & even though both teams are out of the running, I am pretty excited to see the Broncos kick butt this Sunday. I’m not going to lie, I am a sucker for a Manning. I have actually probably watched more Broncos games this year than Giants, a fact I am not proud of.

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Anyway, I will be working Sunday night, & watching it via the NFL app updates as I am sure my store will be absolutely dead. But to get in the football spirit, I decided to watch some of my favorite football movies. A little Remember the Titans, Friday Night Lights, & We Are Marshall marathon with some homemade Buffalo Chicken Pasta. Ummm… give me a nice, cold IPA & yes please!

I made this a few weeks ago for the first time & let me tell you, the first time was not the best. This time around… way better. Amazingly creamy & spicy. I cannot get enough. And best part… no messy fingers like when you eat Buffalo wings. That is literally the worst part of eating wings. I hate it!

Chris doesn’t love creamy pastas the way I do, so for this recipe I actually cut out a quarter of what I would have liked to put in of cream cheese. I suggest you put the entire amount in & indulge. After all… it’s Super Bowl! Day of football, food, & beer.

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1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast
1 lb linguini
1 bunch of broccoli
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
8 oz cream cheese
2 14 oz cans of chicken broth
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
½ tsp garlic powder
½ cup buffalo wing sauce

1. Boil chicken breast for 15-20 minutes in salted water or until chicken is cooked through.
2. When cooked completely, use two forks and shred chicken into small pieces.
3. Cut broccoli off stalk and clean thoroughly.
4. Boil pasta to time on box, 4 minutes before pasta is done cook broccoli in pasta water. Drain pasta and broccoli and set aside.
5. Add cream cheese, cheddar cheese, chicken broth, garlic powder, and salt and pepper to the pot. Simmer on medium high mixing regularly.
6. Once the block of cream cheese is completely melted down, mix in buffalo wing sauce.
7. Mix in pasta and broccoli and stir so all pasta is coated and enjoy.

Spicy Sausage Meat Sauce

The first time I made a meat sauce myself I was actually trying to make chili. Uhg I know I had no idea what the hell I was doing. Anyway, it was right when I moved away & I didn’t really know how to make anything. So I did, basically what I do right now, & through some stuff together, think about some pointers my mom gave me or I picked up on while watching her, & tried to make a meat sauce.

It didn’t work.

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It was not saucy, there too much meat, & it ended up tasting kind of tomatoey, like ketchup. So basically I threw it on top of some noodles & called it meat sauce. Well in five years I have perfected my meat sauce… & my skills of throwing shit together.

Anyway, one of my favorite, & simple meals is my spicy sausage meat sauce. I love having a spicy sauce with my pasta & having sausage instead of the normal turkey or beef definitely helps out in the spice area. Italian-Americans definitely make their sauce much soupier & heavier than Italians. I am convinced it is because we are usually using boxed pastas so we try to cover up the starchiness of the macaroni but until we all start making our own pasta dough, load me up on sauce.

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2 Hot Italian sausage links
3 cloves garlic
1 shallot, thinly sliced
¼ cup olive oil
28 oz crushed tomato
14 oz water
Salt
Pepper
Red pepper flakes

1. Score sausage long ways with a sharp paring knife and remove the casing.
2. Fry sausage at the bottom of a small pan.
3. Remove sausage and lower heat to medium. Add olive oil and scallions to pan. Cook until translucent but not browned.
4. Add pressed or minced garlic and continue stirring so it doesn’t burn. Add red pepper flakes and cook out oils.
5. Add crushed tomato. Fill can halfway with water and add to sauce.
6. Raise temperature to medium-high and add sausage. Once at a boil, lower to a simmer and cook 45-60 minutes stirring regularly.

 

Baked Tomato Mac and Cheese

It rained!! Rain was falling from the skies in California! I am so excited. My car is excited, the grass is excited, the avocados and oranges are excited! Everyone is excited! Haha

When I was living back east rain was nothing but a pain in the butt! It meant I had to pull out my umbrella, the streets were going to get dirty, and my poor little car would have water marks on it. Now, living through this crazy drought the west coast has been going through for the past three years, everyone gets so excited when it rains.

We drove up to Los Angeles to spend the weekend with Chris’s family and during our drive up the storm rolled into downtown L.A. It was pretty cool to be downtown during a lighting storm. People were pulling over and recording the thunder and lightning with their phones and taking pictures of the lighting bolts.

This was actually only the second time since I moved to California that I have heard thunder and I think it was my first time seeing lightning. It definitely made me miss the summer storms back east. A warm rain shower was always the best, being able to go to bed with the window open and hearing the sound of the rain outside.

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So now that you have the So Cal weather report, here is some blog news. I am finally starting to dive into Bloglovin’. What do you all think about it? Is it a good tool to find others and have readers find you? Follow me and let me know what you think about the site. Follow my blog with Bloglovin

This recipe I got from my cousin’s grandmother. I honestly can’t tell you the first time I had this but I remember as a child having it a lot. I don’t even know where. So last year I texted my cousin and said I needed the recipe. I was pleasantly surprised when she sent me it and it was even easier than I thought it would be. It sounds a little weird but it’s a great homey mac and cheese recipe. Enjoy!

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1 lb elbow macaroni
28 oz whole peeled tomatoes
½ stick unsalted butter
12-16 slices of white American cheese

1.  Boil pasta to time on box. Pre heat oven to 350˚.
2.  Spray 8 x 8 glass baking dish with non-stick spray and layer ¼ of macaroni along the bottom of the pan. Top with an even layer of cheese.4 slices should cover all the pasta. Squeeze 1-2 tomatoes, depending on size, on top of the cheese breaking apart the tomato and allowing the juices to cover the cheese. Place tablespoon sized slices of butter on top.
3.  Continue process until all pasta is used. Top later should have a layer of cheese. Pour remaining juices from tomato can on top.
4.  Cover with foil and bake 40-45 minutes, until edges are bubbly.