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Cooking with the Teens at SEEDS!

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On a random morning of a random day, I was sent what was anything but a random email. It was a message from Santos asking for a volunteer to help cook with four teens in the DIG program at SEEDS (South Eastern Efforts Developing Sustainable Spaces)–a community garden in Durham, NC. We would be cooking for about 15 people and would need to stay under $30. That’s two dollars a person, I thought to myself. And immediately jumped at the challenge. I am planning to write a piece on the teens who work in the garden and think that it would be best for them to tell their own stories. Until then however, I wanted to share how much I enjoyed working with them. They are lively and sweet, frank and hilarious, kind-hearted. Realistic innocence. Innocent realism. I’m hoping the opportunity presents itself to work with them again, as I left our meal with a piece of sunshine in my heart and a bushel of basil in my backseat.

Our menu consisted of:

brown rice, black beans, and pinto beans

roasted red, yellow, and purple potatoes

sungold and hierloom tomato salad with spinach, onion, mint, and a balsamic vinaigrette

popcorn with melted chocolate and sprinkled coconut

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Tiffany M. Griffin is the woman behind Como Water, Washington DC’s premiere veg-centric cuisine consulting company. Through cooking classes, demonstrations, catering, and consultations, Como Water gives people the opportunity to learn how to prepare veg-centric cuisine that boasts maximum flavor, with minimal effort. Tiffany is quickly becoming a go-to expert on the future of veg-centric cuisine, and is a regular contributor to Como Water, the blog, as well as to vegetarian and vegan sites across the Internet. For over a decade, this self-taught, entrepreneurial expert has developed a set of tried and true techniques for making simple, delicious, and sometimes decadent veg-centric dishes. Featured on the Steve Harvey Show and other leading media outlets, Tiffany was born and raised in Springfield, MA. She then earned Bachelors degrees in Psychology and Communications from Boston College and a PhD in Social Psychology from the University of Michigan. She now resides in Washington DC, where she has worked in the US Senate and at a federal agency on issues around health, food, nutrition, and international food aid/development, and of course, as the owner of Como Water. Tiffany gets culinary inspiration from the food she grew up eating, and from her travels throughout Latin America, the Caribbean, Western Europe, and Sub-Saharan Africa. She is dedicated to sharing her wealth of knowledge on veg-centric cuisine with others and to help others live by her mantra—love life, live long, and eat veg-centric cuisine!

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