Blue Marlin with a quick (cheaters) Dahl

 photo dahl2_zpsbed46a10.jpg

Many people may notice that I enjoy substituting ingredients. I do this for three reasons. Firstly, sometimes it is quite difficult to find certain ingredients here locally that we are obliged to adapt and find a replacement. Secondly, I believe that, like in life, it is important to adapt to any situation. I find quite difficult to follow regimens that are extremely strict and I much rather a smart approach to eating. As you’ve noticed by now I enjoy eating everything and I also enjoy eating healthy, therefore substitution is a good middle ground between both of them.

Finally, I like variety; I find it boring to always eat the same thing. This is my problem with “essential” carbohydrates (i.e rice, bread, grains, wheat…) that plagues many countries in the world. In the Philippines for example everything is served with white rice, while I’ve already expressed my opinion on why you should reduce or remove your rice intake if you are looking to be healthy, that’s not my only qualm. I feel that if there is a staple on a certain diet that is so prevalent and omnipresent, it leaves no room for exploration with other ingredients. If rice wasn’t so “important”, maybe we would have more vegetable vareties in restaurant menus or maybe we would be able to purchase a wider diversity of roots and vegetables from our supermarkets because the demand for them would be higher.

In a nutshell, this is why I believe in substitution.

If you are looking to lose weight and get healthy, do me (and yourself) a favour, substitute the following ingredients with the following replacements. Start tomorrow, do it for one month and tell me about your progress.

Whoever does this and sees results, I will post your story on the website.

  • Rice
  • Potatoes
  • Sugar
  • Soft Drinks
  • Oatmeal
  • Bread
  • Juice
  • Frappuccinos
  • Milk Tea
  • Ice Tea
  • Deep Fried Food
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Noodles (any kind)
  • Beer or any kind of alcohol
  • Any dessert with flour or sugar
  • Cream
  • Chips


  • Vegetables
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • No Sugar (Fine, Stevia)
  • Water
  • Fruits
  • Fruits or Vegetables
  • Fresh Fruit Juice (no added sugar)
  • Coffee (Iced but with no sugar)
  • Tea (Iced but with no sugar)
  • See above
  • Grilled or Steamed
  • Olive Oil
  • No wheat, gluten free noodles
  • Red Wine
  • Fruits
  • Coconut Milk
  • Nuts


You get the gist of it, if I forgot something unhealthy that we encounter daily, just replace it with something smart.

(I forgot to say that most flour needs can be replaced with almond or coconut flour)

Here is a dish I made today in 15 mins during lunch a while ago. Instead of rice, I used a quick shortcut to a Sri Lankan Dahl made out of Lentils.

For the people who always say to me: “ but I worked out I can eat anything I want right? Like Rice, because I need the energy!!”

I say to you: “I ran 10km worth of intervals this morning, worked about 9 hours and then I have a crossfit class later tonight. Guess what? I’m still alive and still have the energy to do more should I need to.”

Stop complaining J you are the only thing coming between how you are now and what you want to achieve.

Blue Marlin with a quick Dahl

Fry off 2 tbsps of chopped garlic, 2tbsp of chopped ginger, until slightly brown.

In a blender put one can of cooked lentils (1 cup), 1 tsp of curry paste, 1 tsp of garam masala (or turmeric), 1/3 cup of coconut milk, cooked ginger and garlic, pulse together. Place back in a pan on medium and let thicken. Add in 2tbsps of chopped basil, salt and pepper. Mix.

Take your blue marlin fillet and cook it in 1tbsp of grapeseed oil and 1 tbsp of butter, with 3 cloves of crushed garlic and 3 bruised lemongrass stalks. Salt and pepper. Cook until cooked through on medium heat. Baste with the oil from time to time.

Grate 1 whole zucchini, grate 1 whole red banana pepper, mix with a half of a lemon, salt and pepper, 1 tsp of red wine vinegar, 2 tsps of olive oil.

Plate and enjoy. (add very thinly shaved red onions on top of the fish when serving, oh and a crispy fried egg if you want to as well)


 photo dahl1_zps318b80a5.jpg


    1. sunshine pacho April 17, 2013 at 7:51 am milk tea really,,,im drinking it everyday…

    1. Leah April 17, 2013 at 9:10 am

      thanks for bring this alternatives! Plus, another recipe for my healthy diet. :D

    1. Olivr April 17, 2013 at 3:30 pm

      I love the life-dish connection and comparison. haha.

    1. Erika April 18, 2013 at 4:35 am

      Even oatmeal? Really? I thought it was a good substitute for rice, almost like sweet potato… Perhaps I should lessen my oatmeal intake now til my supply’s all used up. Still can’t get over. Is it really that bad?

    1. Danielle April 18, 2013 at 5:26 am

      How about Quinoa? Is it a good replacement for rice?

    1. naki May 1, 2013 at 2:10 am

      Where can i find quoinoa

    1. Olivr May 1, 2013 at 3:41 pm

      nice new layout sir heussaff!

    1. Dyna June 10, 2013 at 7:25 am

      I’ve been doing this substitutes for some time now and its unbelievably effective! Trust me.




I gained weight because of a sedentary lifestyle and overly indulging in foods I knew were bad for me, eating out too often, taking the easy route (microwavable dishes) and not caring what went in my body, before I knew it reached 240 lbs. I lost weight through pure dedication, tireless hours of hard work and yes, food. I cooked my way to fitness, making sure to only feed myself tasty well prepared dishes with all the right stuff, the perfect fuel, taking me down to 150lbs. Of course I indulge from time to time, as the fat kid still lurks inside of me; here you will find a little bit of everything for the sole purpose of sharing my passion for food and life.





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