common ground & vegan baked beans (fèves au lard)

Vegan Baked Beans (Fèves au Lard) | conifères & feuillus

We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children. -Indigenous wisdom

When we first moved to Canada in the 70s, we lived in the eclectic neighbourhood of Mile End in Montréal, home already to successive waves of new immigrants who had come before us. In a way, our first neighbourhood was a fairly good representation of  the population of the country at large and a pretty good place to start new roots. However, of all the other people who had settled here before us, the people with whom my parents identified most with were not immigrants at all.

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coq au vin blanc with spring vegetables

springtime coq au vin blanc | conifères & feuillus

If you limit your choice only to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want, and all that is left is a compromise.  -Robert Fritz

My husband grew up on a meat and potatoes diet. When we met, I was happily heading down the road to becoming vegetarian. Somehow, none of that got in the way of a budding relationship. Now, married and three kids later, we still apply the golden rule of marriage to every meal- compromise. And that’s why coq au vin in our house looks like this.

springtime coq au vin blanc | conifères & feuillus

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hunger & hope: banana bread with nuts & dates

banana bread with nuts & dates | conifères & feuillus

You don’t forget the face of the person who was your last hope. -Suzanne Collins

banana bread
Growing up, my parents never wasted any food. Although, we always had just enough to eat, we certainly didn’t have enough to waste. But I learned the real reason behind their no-waste policy at age 9 during our first visit to India.


After much preparation, our suitcases are packed with gifts until they are ready to burst. Returning to our homeland from Canada, it’s unthinkable to arrive empty-handed.  We leave on a cold Saturday afternoon in December. Our seven week long trip would span over the Christmas holidays to ensure the least amount of disruption to our lives here. We arrive in Bombay, as it is called at this time or Mumbai, as the locals call it, in the dark of the night. Compared to Montréal International Airport (otherwise known as Mirabel), Santa Cruz airport is literally a few small buildings strung together. Exiting the airplane, onto the tarmac, the first things that hit you are the odour and the humidity. Eventually, you learn to accept the odour, but the humidity is unrelenting, even in the middle of the night. My parents had warned me about how different India is compared to Canada, but still, I find myself unprepared. Within minutes of exiting the plane, India no longer feels like home to me anymore. Six years abroad can do that when you are so young. Continue reading “hunger & hope: banana bread with nuts & dates”

lamb and vegetable pie

Guinness Lamb and Vegetable Pies | conifères & feuillus

With Saint Patrick’s day coming up, I thought I’d post an Irish recipe. But I’m totally embarrassed to say that this is only one of two Irish recipes that I make. Andddddd I’m not even sure about how Irish this one really is. The filling is stewed in Guinness…. is that what classifies it as Irish? Either way, this pie is a family favourite!

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