Eat Well. Eat Smart.

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Peter Kaminsky has written a new and different book: Culinary Intelligence: The Art of Eating Healthy (and Really Well).

The author of Pig Perfect: Encounters with Remarkable Swine and Some Great Ways to Cook Them, Seven Fires: Grilling the Argentine Way, The Elements of Taste and The Fly Fisherman’s Guide to the Meaning of Life among others, has delivered a tome unlike any of his previous efforts.

Bill Buford (author of Heat) wrote this for the back cover:

Is Peter Kaminsky a double agent? For twenty years, he eats only the world’s best food, ‘happens’ to discover the cure for diabetes, heart disease, and obesity, and comes home to tell us to cook our own food, have lunch, and eat leftovers? A savvy, audacious book – long overdue.

Mr. Kaminsky is known to most of his readers as the guy who explains why Jamón Ibérico is so damn good, how real chefs work in the real world and the proper way to present a dry fly to a brook trout.

His deceptively simple stories impart knowledge. His way of explanation enlightens. His writing makes you hungry and thirsty for more.

So instead of a book about exploring all manner of tastes, this book is about thinking twice about what (and how) we eat.

In his May 7, 2012 article in the New York Times, Jeff Gordinier had this to say:

Indeed, Culinary Intelligence (Knopf) has nothing to do with shame, and everything to do with the idea of enlisting pleasure as your dietary ally. “I didn’t want to write a finger-wagging book because I don’t think that motivates people to eat well,” he (Mr. Kaminsky) said.

In the book, Mr. Kaminsky makes a case that healthier eating can be achieved, in part, by cooking with foods that pack a lot of what he calls F.P.C., or flavor per calorie. The idea is that by amping up the taste, you can satisfy your cravings with smaller portions.

Mr. Kaminsky advises readers to steer clear of processed ingredients, white flour, sugar and potatoes, but has high praise for anchovies, chickpeas, capers, plain yogurt, olive oil and roasted almonds. And he happily finds room in his dream larder for bacon, butter, Italian sausage and dark chocolate. (Not tons of it, mind you. He recommends using sprinkles and dashes of bacon and sausage as a source of seasoning and crunch in, say, a lentil stew.)

“It’s really not complicated,” he said. “Many weight-loss systems are complicated.” Instead of directing people to a meal-by-meal regimen that’s “a lot to remember, hard to follow,” Mr. Kaminsky offers an approach that factors in our impulsive desire for the delectable.

And it sure works for Peter. The formerly 205-pound writer is now a svelte 165-pound and counting. Downward.

Do you need to consider changing the way you eat?

Photo Credit: Slow Films