marte_marie_forsberg@marte_marie_forsberg

Photographer | Writer | Home cook
Author of “The Cottage Kitchen” cookbook.
Food and Photography workshops in England and Italy.
Shop @forsberg1935

www.mmforsberg.com/

5,371 posts 273,894 followers 2,615 following

marte_marie_forsberg

Exhausted and overwhelmed we’ve fallen asleep next to each other this last year, fingers entwined and toes touching. We launched out of the gate becoming parents, moving, starting two new companies, international travels, renovations, work, workshops and the launch of a new lifestyle brand, before moving again. We’ve shed tears of exhaustion and hitting bottom, before emerging at the surface doing what we love, being together, investing in the future and finding our footing again. Life has taught us lessons this year, of pacing ourselves, planning better, organizing work better and making better decisions. You can do what you love and still burn out. And I did.
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If you want a different result, you need to make different decisions. Life and work has suffered this year, and it’s been challenging to know what to change. I’m sure many of you can relate, which is why when I teach editing at my photography workshops I always spend time on organizing your photo catalog, key wording your images to easily find them, create presets, folders and collections and always saving your images to separate external hard disks. This is the unsexy and perhaps a bit dull part of our creative lives, but if it wasn’t for my systems, folders and organized chaos I don’t think I would’ve made it through this year.
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But most of all, if it wasn’t for my English gentleman @theo_maxfield I’m not sure any system, folder or organizing could’ve helped me through.
Some people simply make you a better version of yourself, and when times get tough they stay, love more, judge less, and that makes all the difference.
In a world that seems to spin faster and faster, with less and less real connection, relationships and integrity, having a true north creates meaning when the world may seem to have lost its depth. And when the fields again bloom in bright yellow around our small countryside cottage and the sun is up, there’s no one I’d rather be next to than him.
#lovemakesallthedifference


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Right now there’s a gentle fog muffling every sound in our village. Like a veil it’s wrapped around the slopes and hills around the cottage barely letting through Spring birds returning from the south. The old cottage across the field has lit the fireplace and there’s a steady stream of smoke emerging from its wonky chimney.
Daffodils are blooming vigorously, scattered like confetti on every patch of grass.
It’s been wild days, weeks and months. I wonder sometimes if we’re not trying too much, trying to be too many things these days. And I believe social media is fueling this notion so that we never really feel we’re enough.
Perhaps I’m the only one who feels this enormous pressure to be more, to do more, to reach higher and to achieve greater success. But I have a feeling I’m not the only one.
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The old oak tree across the field from me looks bewitch in the fog, windswept and tilted, it’s branches reaches up and out. I’ve been thinking about this for a long time how it seems to me it’s all getting so strategic and calculated there’s little room for creativity, individuality and the room to grow up and out. Everything is measured, likes, comments, website statistics and audience numbers. I for one feel a bit lost in it. It’s so easy to get caught up in only the up, the strategy, the numbers, when I’ve been longing to grow out, to widen, to learn, to change and to create and share in a more personal individual way. .
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As I sit here in this green field engulfed in fog, looking out onto that wise old tree on the hill, I think it’s time to make some changes.
To try to find back to that freedom of creation that was present before it all became numbers, statistics and strategies. It feels so contradicting to the human spirit and ever so uninspiring. If this space changes a bit visually, know this is simply the result of a long yearning to be more personal, real and authentic, and less focused on this square box on Instagram, trying to create for it, rather than from the heart. Have you been feeling anything similar? Would love to know your thoughts. xx


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With fluffy cumulus clouds being chased away by wild winds and rain, I’ve been seeking shelter from this cold weather in our cottage kitchen. Baking can be the most therapeutic remedy to stress, cold days and for times when one needs clarity of mind. So with only days to go with renovations and moving back into our old cottage across the street, I’ve been yearning to bake my favorites for comfort and to get my mind off the busy. When I was recipe testing for my cookbook ‘The Cottage Kitchen’, this recipe was the one I was most determined that would make the cut. After school growing up my mother would greet me in an apron with these warm vanilla custard filled buns baking in the oven. Shed light the fireplace and we’d roll these freshly baked treats in frosting and finally dip them in desecrated coconut before gobbling them down with hot chocolate. It may be hot cross bun season here in England, but with cold Spring winds whipping around every cottage corner in our village, and packing up boxes before the move, it’s Norwegian Skolebrød that I crave the most. You can find the recipe in my cookbook. If you’ve made it I’d love to know what you think! #thecottagekitchencookbook #skolebrød


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In just days, the countryside will be returning to its usual green. Every tree is sporting little bunny ears leaves, wild garlic, tulips, Easter lilies and primroses are all in bloom. Everything is returning to life and I feel a new sense of energy running through my veins. This week the kitchen floor in our new home is coming together and hopefully our kitchen will be moving in at the end of the week! But at the moment we’re enjoying final days in the most gorgeous old cottage we could’ve ever hoped to spend this last year in. My English gentleman @theo_maxfield is in the garden working on flower beds and rose bushes, and I’m pulling out a warm dinner from the old AGA. It’s a quiet evening at the cottage and even if we’ll miss this place, we cannot wait to be back in our very own little nest in just weeks. Hope your all having a wonderful Monday. #myenglishcountryside @hatchhousewiltshire


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Despite having rolled up my favorite woolen blanket and wedged it under the front door to stop the draft, this cold spell has our cottage feeling more like Winter than Spring. My mother always say that a roast chicken is the beginning of so much goodness. Shred leftover meat and add to a fragrant soup with fresh herbs and rice after it’s been roasted, make stock from the carcass, and use the cold meat the next day in a sandwich or salad. All of her suggestions are staple pieces here at the cottage, but on a day like today, when even the warmth of a roaring fireplace isn’t enough to heat us up after a walk outside and a cold draft has us all zapped, a roast chicken, served whole with confit tomatoes and rosemary potatoes simply served as it is, is all I crave. I usually keep mine pretty simple, stuff it full of butter (and fresh sliced truffles if you have a few at hand for decadence) right underneath the skin. Massage the last bit of butter all over the chicken, season, a wedge or two of onions and lemons, and leave to roast. It never fails to produce the most succulent roast chicken with the crispiest skin. On a day like today, it will warm you up and hopefully leave you with a piece of two for tomorrow’s lunch. What’s your favorite roast chicken recipe? Happy weekend! I hope you’re staying warm! #roastchicken #weekendlunch


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Just as the sun was on it’s away down between rain clouds, blue skies and cotton candy cumulus clouds, my drear friend @brittchudleigh walked up to the window after a photo session to arrange some lemons on the table. Don’t move, I called out, with such urgency I think I startled the whole room full of workshop participants. I love photographing her. But more so I admire her as a friend and and incredibly talented photographer, artist, and woman. .
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Last year she joined us as a guest teacher in Abruzzo for our annual workshop in the medieval of Santo Stefano di Sessanio @sextantio where we spent three days immersing ourselves in the local food culture, the art of visual storytelling, styling and photography, and Britt shared her vast knowledge and experience with us. We were an incredible group. My mother and my fiancée @theo_maxfield , our three month old baby Emma and even my father surprised us all and joined in! It became a family affair with so much laughter, good food and drinks that my belly hurt for days, in a good way. .
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There’s something so very special about having dear friends and family join our workshops as teachers, hosts, models and support, for me it’s a home away from home, something that sets the tone for our workshops in an intimate, relaxed and warm way that I hope our participants feel.
This year we’ll make our way up the mountain side on that narrow road once again to this incredible village and with a small group of participants share, learn, grow, laugh, and fall asleep with bellies filled with gorgeous local foods. Neither my father nor dear Britt will join us this time, but my beloved mother, daughter, and sister will! I simply cannot wait! #mmforsbergworkshop


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At the French market that took over our wee village last weekend, I was reminded why I love cheese so much, in particular Mont’d Or. I even included a “recipe” for it baked with garlic, rosemary and served drenched in honeycomb in my cookbook. It’s simple, and it’s hardly a recipe but more of a suggested way of preparing this soft winter cheese. When the Montbeliarde or French Simmental cows come down from the Jura mountains after their summertime pastures, this small batch, but ever so milk hungry cheese, is made. It’s season is from August to March, 15th to the 15th to be exact, but I enjoy it most during the cold winter months and in Spring, knowing its season is coming to and end. One can eat it just the way it is, spoon it out onto bread that is still warm and right out of the oven, but I love it baked. The honeycomb I add on top as I pull it out after 10-15min isn’t for show. This cheese has a lot of character and with honey melting into its soft crevasses with its sweet roundness, it’s like a pair that’s meant to be.
There were only a few left at the market last weekend, and even if its season has come to an end, you might find a last one in specialty shops. And then, you have to wait till the end of August for the season to begin again. Which makes it all ever so rewarding. What’s one of your favorite cheeses? If you have my cookbook I hope you’ll give my non-recipe recipe a go, it’s worth it I promise.


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This summer, as soon as we round up our workshop in the Italian mountains of Abruzzo, we’ll return home laden with our favorite foods and wine and set up for our new season of summer cookery classes in our new brick and mortar space. Our village is a quaint little place that has a slow and steady countryside beat. Our fishmonger offers the catch of the day, and with under one hour to the nearest beach, we’re a bit spoiled for choice. The local butcher is also where we get our patès, stock and lard, when I have’t had time to make any myself. Nestled in between green rolling hills, a lake home to swans and with three of the most charming old school British pubs I know are, we enjoy living the quintessential English countryside lifestyle. And this is where we @theo_maxfield and I are ever so excited to be able to greet you in into our “home away from home”, a space that will house all our workshops, collaborations, cookery classes, cocktail classes and events with a working garden and weekly market to plate classes, and supper clubs.
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We’ve been looking for the right place for a long time and then finally it led us back to a gorgeous space with a garden that I first discovered when I moved to England over six years ago!
We’re on the very last stages to finalize it all so do cross your fingers for us and hopefully soon we’ll be able to welcome you in to this little world of ours.
We’ll also have a shop section where we’ll have our lifestyle brand @forsberg1935 for sale, and where we’ll also stock our favorite cookbooks with regular author nights and feasts in the garden.
Make sure to sign up for our newsletter from the highlight in my profile to be notified when we open and to for all upcoming events.
It’s all so exciting!


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The kettle is whistling downstairs, and Mr Whiskey and I just got home from a walk in woods with wild garlic as far as the eye can see. We postponed our Sunday picnic due to cold winds and gathered around in the kitchen with an abundance of cheese and cured meats. My English gentleman @theo_maxfield poured me a glass of Provençal Rosè and we mostly stayed in, danced to our favorite tunes and spent the majority of this day just being...my favorite kind of Sunday. #smallhappinesses #happymothersday


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All morning the village has been buzzing with a uncharacteristic energy. The French market is in town and it seems to bring out the Francophile in all of us. Baskets with baguette, berets and a happy energy that our village reserves for summer is visible on every face. Pints are served in the gardens of every local pub, but we carried out a few chairs in the garden, opened the kitchen doors, enjoyed a glass of wine and emptied out the content from our morning trip down to the market on the table. It may have just been for a day, but Summer arrived mid Spring, and with French baguettes, unpasteurized cheese and hand churned butter our village turned into Provence. Life could be worse;) More in stories. Wishing you all a lovely weekend xx


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The workshop season is upon us, and private participants and larger groups will begin arriving from the four corners of the world to our little village in the English countryside, and joining us for our annual workshop in Italy shortly. It’s always a mixture of excitement and nerves. So we forage, prepare, pickle and fermented in anticipation of opening the doors after the quiet winter season where the green landscape lies resting.
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Today the sun is out, the sky is dotted with tiny cotton clouds, and I’m scribbling down recipe ideas for a few projects and for our upcoming workshops in April and May. One can never really rely on the English weather to put forth a sunny day for when we’ll do outdoor cooking by the lake or picnics in the rolling hills underneath enchanted trees, so we always have to have a backup plan. The other day and beautiful lady in the village turned they key to an old stone church with the most gorgeous natural light streaming in through the tall and narrow windows. It’s tiny and tucked away in a small hamlet just a stone throw away from the cottage. It was supposed to be instead of lunch by the lake during our Gather workshop in April in the event of rain, but we fell head over heels in love and are now dreaming up heavenly events (pun intended;) in that old church that you open with a big old rusty key.
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Thank you all so much for the encouraging words in regards to our upcoming brick and mortar space we’ll be opening this year. I wish I could share it all with you right now as I’m terrible at keeping secrets, but something very very exciting happened as I headed out the front door this no that might move our planned space from one old village to another, which would be a dream come true! So, let’s keep crossing our fingers and I’ll keep this wee secret for a bit longer so as not to jinx it. Ps: Do you believe that some things are simply meant to be? And that if it’s meant to be it will happen? I have butterflies in my belly and crossed toes, give me a few days and I let you know if it worked out;) Image from our annual Abruzzo workshop in Italy. #mmforsbergworkshop


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The doors to the garden are wide open allowing that mild spring breeze to waft through the kitchen. It’s been wildly exciting days, that has left us stumbling to bed at the end of each day falling asleep before our heads have hit the pillows. We’ve been recipe testing, packing, running back and forth to our cottage making sure renovations are moving forward and planning for setting up shop! It’s wild I tell you, running on too many cups of tea and not enough sleep. So many new beginnings and glorious days and so many too short nights.
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Mr Whiskey is a bit unsure of it all, but little Emma takes it all in a stride. We’ve been working on a place to share our recipes with you that are now attached with our newsletters, but that we want to put up online for both drinks and food, but also a place in brick and mortar for you visit, cook in, and be based during our many workshops here in the English countryside. You may remember I mentioned that we’re looking for a space before Christmas and again during my accidental live session a few weeks ago. And now we’re so very near the end!!
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In this process I have a question for you, to any of you that would like to work in, or know someone who’d like to run a vegetable and cutting garden. You need to commit to 2-3 days a week and have experience, be flexible, outgoing and happy to work with us as a team with Mr Whiskey and Emma running around.
We can provide a location for the above person to have a space of their own for their business and to work for us part time. We’ll put up more information online shortly but for now if you have green fingers, and experience and live close to, or is willing to commute to the Tisbury in Wiltshire area then DM me and we can take it from there. #adventuresahead


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