Article featured image
Cheesy, crusty perfectly broiled clams.

We're super-excited for the brand-new cookbook out this week from one of our favorite chefs out there, Aliya LeeKong, chef and creative culinary director at NYC's Indian fine dining mecca, Junoon. Aptly titled Exotic Table: Flavors, Inspiration, and Recipes From Around The World—To Your Kitchen, this is one volume your kitchen library isn't complete without. And yes, we all have big crushes on her, but also her spectacular cuisine. Deal with it by making these savory Peruvian-influenced clams on the half shell. 

While I was in Lima, I learned how to make conchitas à la parmesana, which are scallops on the half shell with aji amarillo, buttery Parmesan, and bread crumbs. When I came back, I thought local, littleneck clams would make the perfect substitute, and these little guys have quickly moved into my favorite spot for an easy and light hors d’oeuvre. Tasty and addictive, you can prep these ahead of time and throw them under the broiler for a few minutes once guests arrive.

I use Pisco here, which is a grape brandy popular in both Peru and Chile, but tequila, a little whiskey, or even white wine would produce equally delicious results.