BOOK-WORMING OVER BRUNCH
BOOK-WORMING OVER BRUNCH
Life + Food
This was my 2nd time attending the Book Brunch Series and it didn’t disappoint.
Let me start from the beginning. Be Noire is a multi-disciplinary platform, headed by Tina Mpondani, in Montreal, that creates events centered around the African Diaspora i.e. Kemetic Yoga Workshops, Visual Art Projects and The Book Brunch Series.
The Book Brunch Series is a guided discussion based on novels from African or African Diaspora authors. The discussion allows for guests to analyze underlying themes, relate it to current issues and think-critically about personal experiences. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe was this month's book choice. Tina explained that she choose the book, given it was on Oprah’s book club list. The novel is centered around the fictional, warrior character, Okonkwo, his Nigerian tribe’s culture, traditions and their reactions / experience with colonization.
With that, the October 30th brunch meet-up, at Chateau St. Ambroise was inspiring, to say the least. After a roundtable of 12 introductions and a brief overview, we jumped right into conversing. The first question asked was about tradition’s and what happened to them. Immediately, we all contributed our thoughts and pushed the discussion further by expanded to larger themes like, the unification of the Black community, our Black hero’s being killed, to the numerous identities, first generation Canadians face and the importance of representation.
What I appreciated about the guided discussion is that it allows for readers to express their opinions and interpretation of scenes and characters. In addition, the discussion morphs and exposes the variety of opinions being bounced around.
Now, I can’t conclude without talking about the food, as that makes up 50% of why we’re there. I can’t stop/won’t stop, singing the praises of V is Delight Caterer, a vegan catering company. I’ll be honest, I was a bit apprehensive about vegan food because, quite frankly, most of the vegan dishes I’ve seen, looked far from appetizing. However this experience turned it all around. In the spirit of being tolerant and accommodating, she also incorporated non-vegan items to the menu.
In between each question of the discussion, a new menu item was introduced. To start, we were served fried plantain, topped with spicy sauce and smoked salmon. The combination sounds a bit odd, but trust me, it was perfect. The mix of sweet and salty was perfection. The next course was vegan pancakes, topped with fresh berries and syrup. In addition, fresh orange and tamarind juice to wash it down. At that point, I thought, it couldn’t get any better, but then she brought out the maple yogurt with berries and hint of mint. I was in brunch heaven! I almost licked my spoon but then remember where I was...lol. Last but not least, the kale salad was scrumptious with a hint of “zing” to conclude the meal and discussion.
The next Book Brunch Series meet-up will be this December 11, for more information head over to the website www.be-noire.com where they will be examining, James Baldwin's, The Fire Next Time.
Mel is an occasional grill-totin', lifestyle writer. She scouts movers, doers and everything in between.