Every so often, you come across a food blog and it challenges you to try your hand at making apricot tartlets or duck confit parmentier. Marie-France Thorisson's food blog, Manger, makes you fall in love with cooking and baking once again. It will also tempt you to pack up the kids to move to the French countryside!
Name: Marie-France Thorisson
Please describe your family structure, number of children/parents/pets:
My husband and I have six children - Gunnhildur (16), Thorir (15), Tiger-Mia (9), Hudson Paul (6), Louise Erna (4) and Gaïa Johanna (14 months). We also have 14 dogs – Jack Russell terriers, fox terriers and one lovely German pointer.
You and your family are living the life in the French countryside that many of us dream about. How is the transition and what do you enjoy the most about living in Médoc?
After living for more than ten years in Paris, we were longing for a country life. It was a dream and we finally fulfilled it two years ago. It was very exciting to suddenly have all this space and acres of nature surrounding us! I love seeing the children discover a sense of freedom in our garden. I love to be surrounded by so much life – seeing the flowers and vegetable grow, understanding trees and flowers, spotting wild animals. Médoc has an amazing wildlife, beautiful beaches, pine forests and vineyards offering some of the world's best wine!
Both my parents have always loved good food and introduced me to amazing culinary culture since I was a child. Thanks to them, I really appreciate good cooking and it became my passion. Throughout my career in media, I had the chance to interview and spend time with some of the best chefs in Paris. I feel I have learnt so much from them. I love cooking at home, so I thought it would be interesting to share my food diary with everyone. When we moved here, the timing was perfect to start a food blog.
What's your favorite dish to cook for your family?
I love to cook duck confit with roast potatoes.
What tips would you provide to parents/caretakers that are hesitant about cooking with children?
Cooking is a great opportunity to spend quality time with your kids. You should pick ideal recipes that are easy for them to participate in. It is also important to educate them on the ‘raw materials’ – they should learn about seasonal vegetables, meat and dairy products. I recently bought an illustrated book on vegetables – the kids are fascinated by it and they love learning all the names.
What is your typical day like in Médoc?
The kids start school at 8:30 am, then I go to the bakery for a baguette and croissants. After a good breakfast, I go to the market for some food shopping, and get inspired to make a certain dish depending on the available seasonal fruits and vegetables. After that I am usually busy cooking, writing, taking photographs with my husband, gardening, taking care of our dogs. Then all of a sudden the kids have finished school!
Three words used to describe yourself?
Imaginative, determined and enthusiastic.
Three words used to describe your family?
Adventurous, playful and determined.
If you could visit any country, which would it be?
I am still dreaming to do the ‘silk road’ someday.
Is there anything else you would like our readers to know?
I would encourage everyone to follow their dreams and passions. It’s like jumping into a pool – once you’re in, it feels great!