Monday, August 22, 2011

Contest Prep Veggies that Won't Make You Gag

Veggies: a contest prep staple, whether you like it or not.  If you're like me, you tolerate veggies.  You may like a few, and eat them willingly during the off season, but the rest of the green stuff???????  ICK!  My mother raised me eating copious amounts of greens - I just don't care for them.  I do like asparagus and fresh spinach (the frozen stringy stuff makes me want to vomit, though), and broccolini (not broccoli, but broccolini).  And I now have developed a taste for okra.  But the rest of it - I'm not a fan.

As I get deeper and deeper into prep, veggies can actually become a source of carbs.  My last meal, for example, is 120g ground turkey with 300g green veggies.  300g..........that's way more than a plateful of veggies, folks - it's like a plate and a half, sometimes more, depending on the veggie you choose.  And for a non-veggie-lover, that's a lot of the green stuff.  I tried playing around for MANY weeks, and continued to struggle.  At first I was being lazy and was just steaming stuff with salt and pepper.  I soon realized that I was going to have to suck it up and whip out the culinary skills in order to survive.  Here are 2 dishes I've made lately that I LOVE.  300g of either of these is CAKE...........mmmmmmmmmm, cake.

Steamed Broccolini with an Asian Reduction
3 bunches of broccolini, washed with the stems trimmed (this recipe works with broccoli, too, obviously)
PAM olive oil spray
3 cloves of fresh garlic, chopped
1/4 c soy sauce
1 t red pepper flakes
1 t honey (optional)
2 T rice vinegar
1T fresh ginger paste (or 1 T chopped fresh ginger)

Steam broccolini and then blanch them while you create the reduction.

Spray the bottom of a large skillet liberally with PAM (should be a decent amount - enough to saute garlic/ginger without burning).  Heat oil spray over medium-high heat and add chopped garlic and fresh ginger paste.  Saute for about a minute, and be careful not to let it burn.  PAM doesn't last as well as EVOO, so you really have to watch it.  Add in the red pepper flakes and saute them for a few seconds (adding red pepper flakes to oil ALWAYS increases the heat factor more than adding them at the end of a dish).  Add your blanched broccolini to the pan and rotate them several times to coat them in the ginger/garlic/red pepper sauce.  Once coated, add your rice vinegar and soy to the pan and toss to coat.  Remove the broccolini after about a minute and then turn up the heat to high.  Add honey (optional - for those prepping, you can skip it, but it truly only adds trace cals/carbs) and reduce by about 1/3.  Drizzle sauce over top and serve.  Deeeeeeeeelish!

Sauteed Okra (recipe compliments of IFBB Pro, Kayde Puckett!)
3 cups okra, chopped into small slices (about 1/2 an inch)
PAM olive oil spray
cajun seasoning of choice
fresh garlic or garlic powder

Spray bottom of skillet liberally with PAM (again, enough so the garlic doesn't burn).  Saute chopped garlic for about 1 minute, then add your okra (if using garlic powder, skip this step).  Saute okra for a few minutes and then add in the cajun seasoning.  If you're using garlic powder, this is when you'd add it.  Season okra with salt and pepper and continue to saute. 

The seeds release a slimy liquid as they cook.  This bothers some people, but I don't really mind it.  I saute everything for about 5 minutes or more - they should be soft to the touch.  Sometimes I cook them longer if I have more than 3 cups - it just depends on feel!


  1. yum def trying the broc asian reduction - thanks!!

  2. It's really yummy! I inhale those broccolini!

  3. Hi, I came across your site and wasn’t able to get an email address to contact you. Would you please consider adding a link to my website on your page. Please email me back and we'll talk about it.


    Hailey William