News From the North

News From the North

How to Stay Warm In The Winter

By Alison Matheny

No matter how you slice the Panettone, winters upstate are brutal. And cold. And long. You can’t jam your body between 40 others on a subway car, or crack a window because your building’s thermostat is set to tropical. From the moment you roll out of bed, you’ll spend the whole day trying to warm up. Having survived two winters up North, I’m here to share tested and proven tips for skirting the chill. And, if all else fails, you can drive south and work on your tan until May. 

Keep Your Core Temperature Up
The ultimate goal for ensuring comfort and well-being in any winter situation is to keep your core temperature up. It’s easier to do if you’re fireside at a cozy lodge and harder to do, say, working out of your home that has single-paned windows and a rising oil bill. One obvious method for increasing your core temperature is exercise. I prefer a mid-day bath, a bone broth snack, and never taking my feet out of socks (especially if they’re made from alpaca). 

Make Sure Your Pantry Is Stocked
By mid-winter, you’re likely too cold and lazy to warm up your car, shovel yourself out of your driveway, get in said car (with public-facing clothes on), and take yourself to a civilized dinner. For this reason, you need your pantry to be bountiful. I’m talking nuts, I’m talking quinoa. I’m talking at least one box of emergency mac n’ cheese. Be sure to grab any pastry you see while out for coffee and any cheese that might only be worth buying if you have company over. 

Develop Upper Body Strength
I have probably doubled the muscle mass of my biceps since moving upstate. This is largely due to shoveling snow. An apartment stoop is one thing, but introduce a metal roof without a snow guard directly over the path from your front door to your driveway, and you’ve got a 45-minute upper body workout. Once you build strength from shoveling snow, you can level-up by lifting bags of salt or splitting wood (still working towards this benchmark myself!).

From Vogue to Vagabond-Chic:
A Tale of Wardrobe Transitions

By Deenie Hartzog-Mislock

“So what are you going to wear?” 

This is the first question everyone will ask you when you tell them you’re interviewing at Vogue. At the time, I worked for a food magazine and wore band tees beneath blazers and skinny black jeans with scuffed-up flats. I was certain, however, that old t-shirts weren’t exactly fashion’s most coveted item. So, I kept things simple during my interviews: a worn-in chambray button-down and a vintage skirt; a silk blouse and a black leather jacket. When I was finally hired, I panicked and justified every new purchase—Gucci, Saint Laurent—as essential to my job. I preened myself to be a respectable-looking creative in a corporate world as I racked up credit card bills nearly as high as my Brooklyn rent. For years, it worked.

Then I moved upstate, began working from home, and adopted a wardrobe of chunky sweaters, crotch-ripped jeans, and (let’s be honest) pajamas. I purchased Blundstone boots. Come summer, I’d accumulated more linen dresses than an EILEEN FISHER outlet. 

I rationalized these far-leaning purchases by my desire to support local businesses. Plus, I really wanted to blend in. Without fashion-obsessed co-workers to impress, hip Brooklyn restaurants to dine at, and the competitive spirit of New York City to hold me accountable, I settled for a wardrobe befitting a lumberjack. 

I’d gone off the comfort deep end. How could I remedy an identity crisis that manifested as sack-shaped Ilana Kohn coveralls?

First, I realized I was not beholden to a certain standard of dressing. I could curate a wardrobe that reflected my new laid-back sensibility, but also do justice to the expressive, feminine style that once made me feel alive all those years in New York City.

I started shopping for consignment on Poshmark. And thanks to brands like Doên, Madewell, and Sézane that offer transitional styles, plus select pieces from my favorite local shops—Artemsia, Enkyu, and Nina Z—I’m discovering my look doesn’t have to be this or that. It can just be me.

How To Stock Your Pantry For Winter 

By Colu Henry

Winter has arrived, and with it - snow, sleet, ice, wind, and yes, more rain. If you’re lucky enough to have a wood-burning stove (or other radiant-heat warming situation) in your home, you’ll most likely be too cozy to want to leave. I wouldn’t and I don’t. 

The good news is that if you think ahead, you can stock your pantry and fridge/freezer to pull off a hearty meal. This shopping list and recipe ideas will keep you and your neighbors well-fed - at least until you run out of firewood.

Beans: Dried beans, soaked overnight and cooked until creamy, are much better (in my opinion) than canned beans, but the canned version will always work in a pinch. They can be heated gently in olive oil and garlic before being spooned over toasted bread and topped with fresh herbs. They can also be made into Pasta e Fagioli with some canned tomatoes (see below) or mixed in with garlicky wilted greens and served with a side of bread for sopping up the excess sauce.

Canned San Marzano Tomatoes: Canned tomatoes are the most important pantry ingredient one can have. They’re ideal for a simple pasta sauce with garlic and oil (or sausage if you’re so inclined) and useful for making Shakshuka, which includes sautéing some peppers (or not) and eggs in a pan so the eggs gently poach in the sauce. Canned tomatoes are also a hearty addition to any soup or stew.

Chicken broth: I make my own and freeze it in quart containers, but the boxed kind is certainly acceptable. Always opt for low-sodium. Whisk in a few eggs and grated Pecorino cheese and you have Stracciatella soup. Sauté an onion, a carrot or two, some celery, beans, and canned tomatoes, and you’re more than half way to minestrone.

Eggs: Clean out your crisper drawer (or use leftover roasted vegetables) and make a frittata, which will feed a crowd for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Add in cheese from a past dinner party that is now lurking somewhere in the back of your fridge. For an easy comfort food, you can coddle eggs in cream and serve with toast.

Dried Pasta: I like to have a long and lean cut, such as linguine, and one that is short and curvy, such as fusilli. Did you know Cacio e Pepe is a simple combination of butter, black pepper and Pecorino Romano cheese?

Other versatile ingredients to have on-hand are: Fresh herbs for garnishing (such as parsley, chives, basil, or thyme), sausages, potatoes, chicken thighs (for chicken cacciatore), ground turkey or pork (for chili or meatballs) and if I’m being truly honest, I always have a Newman’s frozen pizza available...just in case!

Wine is equally important, so I encourage you to have a case of red at the ready. It should be reasonably priced, bright, and high in acidity so it will work well with nearly everything. A glass of wine is just delightful alongside runny cheese, salumi and a hunk of sesame bread toasted and drizzled with olive oil. This, plus a lightly dressed salad of bitter greens that you can eat with your  fingers, is a meal fit for a king (or queen). Now, please bring on that storm.

Talking Up My Town

Talking Up My Town

High To Low And Back Again

High To Low And Back Again