The Mass Gainers Essential Egg Salad

When I think back to my Gold’s Gym days, a time I was most definitively learning “the ropes,” as well, my way around a gym floor. I can clearly remember a few very serious lifters – with some very serious dedication – sitting on equipment between their sets eating from large containers full of egg salad, and drinking out of gallon water jugs.

Egg

If they were “off season” or not I couldn’t tell you, I didn’t give it quite that much thought. However, I definitely think it has something to do with why, to this day, I go through so many eggs. In fact, I know it does.

Egg

I was a gym neophyte, a newbie, the quintessential ectomorph striving for gains. The proverbial sponge, I listened to any and everyone and their advice, read everything I could, and ultimately relied on good ol’ trial and error. Lets call it, Applied Bodybuilding.

Protein

So – you wanna get big? Ya need a lot of protein. Our muscles require it, and how. We know of protein’s importance to our overall growth and development. Standard advice is one gram of protein per pound of body weight. If you don’t want to take my word for it click here. To gain a serious bulk, plan on upping that ante to 1 – 1/2 grams per pound. Ya, man. Everyday. Sound like a lot? It is.

This is not the sweet pickle relish deliciousness that mom used to make for the pot luck, (which I love) though I do believe it to be a serious contender.

Just be sure to wait until you are off the workout floor to consume it. The management will appreciate it.

Ingredients

  • 12 -16 eggs
  • 1/2 of a medium size onion, diced
  • 3 – 4 tbs mayonnaise
  • 2 – 4 tbs spicy, brown mustard
  • salt & cracked black pepper to taste

The Perfect Hard-boiled Egg

Step 1

Submerge eggs in a large pan of room temperature water and bring to a rolling boil. About 8 minutes. Boil for exactly 10 minutes.

Egg

Remove pan from heat and let sit for exactly 10 more minutes. Remove the eggs from the pan and submerge in a bowl of ice water. After about 5 minutes of cool down, test one. Voila.

Step 2

Combine all the other ingredients together well. Peel the eggs and roughly dice. (no need to get hairsplitting meticulous here) Fold the mixture into the eggs. I measure 4 eggs per container. 6 grams per egg x 4 eggs equals 24 grams of pure protein per serving. Done.

Egg

Back in the day

That Gold’s was an enormous cavern of a space. We were truly spoiled. The dumbbells stretched half the length of one side, and the leg area was the envy for miles around. Even during peak hours you rarely had to wait for a machine. And one more thing – it was clean – really clean.

Ripley would not believe it, but monthly membership was only $15. Ah, the good ol days. Any and everybody came and trained. I knew former bodybuilders, physique competitors, true gym rats, two CEO’s, and everyone in between. Gyms are communities, and there is something to be said for community. This was a cross-section of everyday folk just trying to get fit. I like that.

Aside from the customary self-absorbed knuckleheads, most everyone was supportive and had some knowledge and experience to share. I like that old school environment. Watching those bodybuilders eating all that egg salad got me curious about eggs. I’d always liked eggs. Growing up my father taught me how to make the perfect omelette, using water not milk. They inspired me to learn everything I could about them, building muscle, and more. Again, don’t just take my word for it.  click here

For total randomness follow @jwilltrain on Twitter.

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit”  – Aristotle

White Bean & Tomato Soup

“I live on good soup, not fine words” – Moliere

Soup season is upon us and there are few things better than a pot of simmering home cooked deliciousness – particularly on a sub zero day during an “Arctic Blast.” Would I rather be sailing? You bet.

Soup

Provence is where I’d rather be

My bucket list has no end in sight, and until I am waist deep in cerulean blue waters I try to recreate the Mediterranean lifestyle as much as I can – in my kitchen.There is something about this rustic chic region that appeals to me. Stone, wood, “Au natural” shall we say. And yes, the weather. Stews are commonplace in Provence most notably Bouillabaisse. As with many dishes from the region, it’s deliciousness originated among the “working class” and later through the years came to satisfy the gourmet palettes. Soups and stews are not full of hassle – you put in pot and simmer. And the more you simmer the better it gets. So how do you take a minimal amount of ingredients and turn them into a bowl full of amazing flavor? Well, it really doesn’t get much easier than this. Really.

Related Articles

Mediterranean Diet & Getting Started

Black Olive Tapenade

Always start out with a larger pot than what you think you’ll need” – Julia Child

White Bean & Tomato Soup

soup

  • 1 (16oz)  bag of Great Northern Beans
  • 1 (28oz) can Whole Peeled Tomatoes
  • 1 medium white onion finely minced
  • 2 garlic cloves finely minced
  • 2- 3 tbs Olive Oil
  • 1 heaping tbs Herb de Provence Seasoning Mix
  • 1 tbs dried parsley
  • 8 cups water
  • Salt & Cracked Pepper to taste

“Cooking well doesn’t mean cooking fancy” – Julia Child 

DIRECTIONS

Soak the beans in water overnight, or at least 8 hours.

Step 1

Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat then add the onions. Saute onions until translucent, about 8 – 10 minutes or until soft. Add the garlic and cook for 1-2  minutes being careful not to burn. Drain the beans and add  to pan with 6 cups of water. Bring to a boil skimming the top for any foam. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 1 hour.

Step 2 

Stir in tomatoes with juice, seasonings, and additional water. Salt and pepper to taste. Return cover and continue simmering for 1 more hour. Towards the end tomatoes will break up easily with a fork.

The cooks privilege: To taste periodically and adjust the seasonings.

Quality Control Check: After 2 hours the beans begin to soften the way I like them. 30 more minutes and I’m good to go.

As for living on good soup? But of course. Soups like these are hearty. Northern beans are an excellent source of protein and unlike meat are a cholesterol free. And garlic is, well, garlic and a little goes a long way. Tomatoes are full of lycopene – which makes them red – and are one of the few foods that release more of their nutrients as they are cooked. All the more reason to simmer down, simmer down, simmer down now.

For more of my obsession for all things Mediterranean follow @jwilltrain on Twitter.

Soup

Want more ideas for the stove top? Contact jwillcook:

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” – Hippocrates

Meal Prep Secrets

Seasoning

From my new eBook: All Four Burners  Ways to Make Meal Prep and Time in the Kitchen Easier

Flavor

b. alter or enhance the taste of, food or drink, by adding a particular ingredient

Lux Life

The world’s most expensive spice continues to be Saffron weighing in, at the time of this writing, at a staggering $1500 a pound. Of course, if you are Mama and Daddy Warbucks and have deep pockets then it isn’t an issue forking that much moolah over the stuff. Then again what home kitchen needs a pound of any spice?

Seasoning

In Greek Mythology, the mortal youth Crocus was good friends with Hermes the god of athletes and travelers. One day, Hermes accidentally fatally injured Crocus turning him into a flower. These gorgeous flowers produce red stigmas and it is from here pure saffron is harvested. Labor intensive to say the least, distinctive in taste, a little goes a long way. Native to central and south Asia it is believed to have been first cultivated by the ancient Greeks.

Now, Iran currently holds the title of the world’s largest producer of Saffron with an estimated ninety percent of the world’s supply grown there.

Back in the cafe I went through an enormous amount of chicken. My little grills were busy, and just like Col. Sanders notoriously secret blend, mine remains a secret. Some things simply have to be, however after deciding to write this eBook, I figured I’d have to give a hint or two. So – get a good quality black peppercorn grinder. A staple in my kitchen the aroma is spicy, pungent and pepper goes on just about everything.

Native to South India, black pepper remains the world’s most traded spice. At one time Europeans paid extremely exorbitant prices for those little peppercorns. Thought of like semi-precious jewels, it has been said that workers in 1500’s were required to wear clothing with no sleeves to prevent them from smuggling them out.

Hippocrates also wrote about using pepper for medicinal purposes, and in traditional Chinese medicine it is thought to “warm the interiors,” and used for stomach and intestinal issues. Vietnam continues to be the largest exporter of pepper in the world today.

“Variety’s the spice of life, that gives it all it’s flavor” –  William Cowper

Meal Prep Ideas COUSCOUS SALAD

COUSCOUS SALAD

Couscous

Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy

That phrase originated from an old detergent commercial. Clean they wanted those dishes. When speaking of eating cleaner, I always like to preface with this: Eating cleaner means different things to different people. To me, it means eating foods with as little additives and preservatives as possible. Fresh.

Versatile, inexpensive, and healthy, this has been a staple in my meal prep Rolodex for awhile now.  It also continues to be a client favorite as well. The crispness of the ingredients, little prep time needed, and versatility make it a year round no-brainer. Couscous, a whole-grain, has been around for centuries, and is full of vitamins and minerals. It took me years to get rice right, but couscous – it really doesn’t get much easier than this.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 box plain couscous
  • 1 can chick peas, drained & rinsed
  • I bell pepper, seeded & diced
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded & diced
  • 1 bunch parsley, chopped
  • 1 half (or more) medium red onion, diced

For the Dressing

  • 1/4 cup good, quality olive oil
  • 1 lemon juice and zest
  • salt & cracked black pepper

PREP TIME 

15 mins

COOK TIME

15 mins

INSTRUCTIONS

couscous

Cook the couscous according to the directions on the box. 15 minutes. Remove pan from heat, set aside, and let cool. Once cooled combine with all the prepared ingredients and toss well. Keep dressing on the side until time to eat. Done.

couscous

SUGGESTIONS

The ingredients in this dish are raw, crunchy, and full of flavor. When using a dressing I like a good, quality olive oil a lemon squeeze, and a little salt & cracked pepper. Use what you like, however it is the ingredients you want to shine – not a dressing. The additions are endless – cherry tomatoes, olives, and in the middle of summer – feta cheese and watermelon.

I also like to add a piece of grilled chicken from the George Foreman Grill. The chicken breasts cook terrifically  fast (around 6 mins) making dinner at home after a long day hassle free, and for me, that is a huge benefit of my meal prep.

Follow my obsession about eating cleaner @jwilltrain on Twitter 

“The kitchen is a country in which there are always discoveries to be made”  – Grimod de la Renyaire