Red pepper, I love you.

Somewhere on her beautiful mountain-top, my mother is watching the fiery fall colors and crying a little, but doesn’t know why.  What she doesn’t know (yet) is that this evening, I pulled a small meatloaf I made -using her wonderful recipe- from the freezer and did something she would consider unthinkable.

I took out a week’s frustration at the congestion that has been meandering between my lungs and nose all week on the meatloaf, with a pile of sinus-freeing spicy things.  I lined the bottom of the baking dish with a smoky citrus salsa, then doused the meat with both white and crushed red pepper, and baked the thing until the spicy flavor permeated every meaty bite.

And it was glorious.