Today, we are talking to Anick Lamothe, blogger, author, translator and mother. Anick has also been volunteering with Breakfast Club of Canada since 2013. The self-avowed foodie behind the blog Une mère poule un peu dingue has created a collection of 10 nutritious and delicious recipes for the Club. These delicious recipes are available as part of Circle K and Couche Tard’s fundraising campaigns for BCC.
Meet the creator of flavours Anick Lamothe :
You seem to have led several different lives. Can you tell us a little more about your background?
When I was younger, I wanted to be a teacher or a lawyer. I actually worked as a notary for three years and I hated it! I always had a thing for healthy eating, and since I was already making homemade baby food for my daughter, I started making some for friends of mine who were new moms. This was the original impetus behind Les aliments La Mère Poule, which I co-founded with my mother. The idea was a success, but my mother fell ill and we had to sell the business. Not long after that, I ventured into the world of pharmaceutical development, and that’s when I decided to start giving back to society. The Club was a natural choice, given my love for children.
What sparked your passion for cooking?
When I was a little girl, my mother used to sit me down beside her while she was working in the kitchen. I had my own miniature rolling pin and I even used to make pies! I always found comfort in the smells coming from the kitchen. As I grew older, I picked up the pastime of reading cookbooks like other people would read novels. Cooking is a great way to bring families together and share special moments. That’s what it means to me.
What is your favourite dish or recipe?
I tend to lean more toward the savoury than I do the sweet. For the longest time, my favourite thing to make was my grandmother’s mocha cake or her “fridge cookies.” But now, I’m far too curious to limit myself to a single choice.
Why did you choose to get involved with Breakfast Club of Canada?
Because children can’t learn when they’re hungry, and education is the key to success. Growing brains want to learn, but they can’t do it on their own. I think fighting food insecurity is basically a civic duty. It’s an investment in the future of our society. I’m someone who’s constantly on the go, so the only time I had to volunteer was early in the morning. That’s why the Club’s breakfast program was the perfect solution for me: I could lend a hand to a deserving organization while helping children eat better.
How does this come together in your day-to-day life?
Before the pandemic, we all helped set up the tables and prepare food, chatting merrily away as we went. The volunteers are in charge of serving breakfast and doing dishes. It’s a great opportunity to connect with the kids — we always have an encouraging word and a smile for each one. Some children even volunteer to help out, and that’s wonderful. I miss my talks with Fadia and her great big smile, and with Sophie, who’s just a little wisp of a thing. We are there to serve food to kids, but there’s a human warmth that goes in both directions. At the end of every shift, I’m always on cloud nine, even though it’s not necessarily easy to get up at 5:30 in the morning and crawl into a freezing cold car. But you get more than you give when you volunteer with a breakfast program.
What have you noticed about the children who frequent the breakfast program?
I live in an ethnically diverse neighbourhood, so there are lots of newcomers in our community. But everybody shares a love of maple syrup! What really stands out is how kind and polite the children are. You can see how nervous some of them are at first, but after a couple of weeks they feel right at home. What I’ve also noticed is how inclusive the whole thing is: you almost never see a child eating on their own. And all the different cultures come together!
Can you tell us a little more about the recipes you’ve created for the Club?
I wanted to come up with healthy, nutritionally balanced and easy-to-make recipes, but with a little something extra to expand young palates while still maintaining a broad appeal. So my version of oatmeal, for example, is made with spelt, a grain that is as healthy as it is yummy. My muffins use buckwheat flour and an egg, with a dash of inspiration from Korean street food cuisine!
Don’t miss the fundraising dates below. Make a donation at the store checkout of a Couche-Tard or Circle K, in Maritime locations, and get a link on your receipt to access these exclusive recipes!