A 2-Step Guide to Staying Warm and Cozy All Winter

(Image credit: Roger Kamholz)

Forget chestnuts roasting on an open fire. The best scent this time of year doesn’t have a song, but it should.

If you’re lucky enough to have a (working) wood-burning fireplace, you have to take advantage of it. How exactly you should do that involves two simple steps — follow them and you’re sure to stay warm and cozy all season.

(Image credit: Maureen Petrosky)

Step 1: Make this drink.

It’s cold outside! This drink can warm you up! It’s a spin on the classic Old-Fashioned with a fat slice of orange peel and orange bitters instead of the traditional Angostura. And it features the spice of rye instead of traditional bourbon.

Get the recipe: Orange Old-Fashioned

Step 2: Throw the rest of the orange peel in the fire.

Got your drink? Good! Now dry the rest of the peel on a sheet pan or cookie cooling rack, uncovered on your counter. Leave it overnight. The next evening, consider making another drink with a second orange (this can be a cyclical thing you do all winter long!) and then add your dried peels to your kindling and start a fire.

The dried orange peels will smell clean and festive. They’re also better for your fireplace because they produce less creosote than other kindling. And the flammable oils found inside the peels enable them to burn much longer.

What are you doing to stay warm?