Musings on Gratitude

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My Secret Ingredient: Gratitude

Like most food bloggers, I live by the motto, “sometimes you win some, sometimes you lose some.” Making up your own recipes is tough and capturing those recipes through appealing food photography is even tougher (at least for me it is ;)). Despite this, I’m motivated to keep Como Water alive and thriving not only because of the wonderful community I have built, but because I am lucky enough to “win some” quite often. I really do love most of the dishes I make. And more than eating them myself, I love sharing them with my closest friends, family, and co-workers.

When recently asked how I ‘do‘ it, I replied that my secret ingredient was one that you couldn’t find in any grocery store in the country, in any kitchen supply shop in the world, or on any site on the entire web. It was an ingredient that one must find for oneself, in one’s own heart, and it’s that nine letter word we all know as gratitude.

Before I prepare any dish, I contemplate how grateful I am to have the privilege of creation. What higher honor is there to take raw ingredients, to manipulate them, to trust in the consistency of tried and true techniques like boiling, and whisking, and chopping, and baking, and then to end up with a delectable treat to share? I cannot think of a higher honor. I cannot think of something more intimate. I cannot think of a greater gift (except maybe a Kitchen Aid mixer, ahem, hint hint :D). That gratitude for the ability to create permeates my meals and is translated into each and every morsel of each and every meal. Oh, but alas, it doesn’t stop there…

At the moment of actually eating, after I have expressed my gratitude for being able to create, I infuse my food with gratitude for being able to taste. I sit down, close my eyes, and think, “I am so grateful to have this food and I am so grateful to be able to taste this food.” And by taste, I mean, to really, really savor each flavor, to let each bite roll over my tongue, first sweet, then sour, then salty, and we can’t forget about bitter.

You see, more often than not when people think of gratitude in the context of food, they think of being grateful for having food to eat in the first place. Indeed, for so many people, this is not the case. Too many people across the world are hungry, but for us–me writing this blog and you reading this blog–we are blessed with abundance.

Indeed, we have much to be grateful for. However, the act of creation and the ability to really experience and enjoy what we create are also gifts, and gifts that we should keep at the forefront of our minds when we buy food, prepare it, and, of course, when we consume it.

Through this type of mindfulness we grow, and importantly we breathe this gratitude into our dishes, and in turn breathe this gratitude into our loved ones. Like attracts like, gratitude begets gratitude, and through our deliberate reflection on all of our gastronomic gifts–those small and large, transparent and more opaque–we grow both individually and as a global community. I really believe this, wholeheartedly, to be quite honest :D. So the next time you sit down to create a meal or to eat one, take a second to think about all that you have to be grateful for. You’ll realize that there’s a lot!

I’ll be back soon with a recipe! Have a great day!!!

Written by

Tiffany M. Griffin is the woman behind Como Water, Washington DCโ€™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 mantraโ€”love life, live long, and eat veg-centric cuisine!


  1. This was a wonderful read my friend. Gratitude, privelige – not many people are as inspiring as you are to think of blogging this way ๐Ÿ™‚
    Lovely, thank you ๐Ÿ™‚

    Choc Chip Uru

  2. You are an awesome lady!! I know you’re much younger than I am… but you have already come to many conclusions that most people twice your age have not even touched upon. You keep yourself grounded.. centered and full of gratitude. Those that are most grateful have the best lives because the appreciate all they have. ๐Ÿ™‚ I love all the pictures of you… especially the one meditating. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. What wonderful thoughts to share! Thank you for a lovely reminder how lucky we are to be food writers/bloggers. I’ll try to remember that the next time I realized I took 30 photos of a dish and none of them look right! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  4. Beautifully said Tiffany. Amen, I say amen. Indeed there are a lot of things that we should be grateful for and all we have to do is to be more aware of the non-worldly things that surround us.

  5. I’m grateful for YOU, my friend.

  6. Great reminder, Tiffany, that we all have gifts of creativity, of taste, of presence, and of the basics that we need.

  7. such a lovely post Tiffany! I just love the work you do!

  8. I could not agree more. Love the photos of you. You’re in wonderful shape!

  9. What a lovely post Tiffany and a very lovely lady. Cheers to you!

  10. What beautiful thoughts. Thank you for sharing and reminding us to be grateful. I try to remember to greet each day with “thank you, thank you, thank you”. I am grateful for so many things in my life, one of them my love of food and cooking and having wonderful people out there willing to share their knowledge. So thank you.

  11. this was a very sweet post tiff and so very true too!
    your pictures were lovely and you look beautiful and fit ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. What a beautifully written post, and it’s like zen! This is zen of cooking! Maybe back then when food was hard to get, we appreciate more about food and food culture as a whole thing. I admire of you, Tiffany, and keep up the great work you do. ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Lovely post and very good reminder of all that we have to be thankful for!

  14. This is a beautiful post, Tiffany! You said this perfectly. I enjoy sharing my food with others more than I like eating it myself. I think also shows gratitude to those in your life and that you are able to share and have people to share with. PS – I’d love a Kitchen Aid mixer too. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  15. Thanks for the comments folks! ๐Ÿ˜€

  16. This is simply amazingly written. You are one beautiful lady and I respect you as much as I appreciate you!

  17. We always long for what we don’t have and fail to remember the things we do have. Gratitude is a key to being happy, everyday. A scrumptious post! Well said!