New to Athens, Georgia’s Southern Mills development, Puma Yu’s showcases Thailand’s varied culinary practices in dishes like the tom yum clams. For owners Pete Amadhanirundr and Ally Smith, the restaurant is a chance to share what’s most important to them, whether it’s the producers they work with or the dishes they serve. It’s why Amadhanirundr always has a curry on the menu. The dish varies regionally in Thailand and shows how diverse the cuisine is.
1 4×4 sheet of kombu
3 Thai basil stems, leaves reserved for garnish
2 lemongrass tops, hearts reserved for steaming
¼ cup bonito flakes
12-16 fresh clams (Amadhanirundr uses Sapelo Island littlenecks)
1 Thai chile, cut in half, more if you want it spicier
2 lemongrass hearts, cut in half Juice of 1 lime, more if limes are small or not juicy
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon finely diced shallots, 6-8 Thai basil leaves, and chili oil for garnish
For the broth
For the clams
- Make the broth: In a large pot, combine kombu, basil, and lemongrass tops with 1 quart water; bring to a boil then reduce to a gentle simmer for 15 minutes. Add bonito flakes, turn off heat, and let steep for 10 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer and discard solids.
- Make the clams: In a wide, deep pot, arrange clams so they are not stacked on top of each other. Add 1 to 1¼ cups of kombu broth, chile, and lemongrass hearts. Cover and steam clams over medium-high heat until they have all just started to open, checking every 2 minutes to make sure they’re not overcooked. Once clams open, add lime juice and fish sauce. Taste for sour, spicy, salty, and umami; broth should be spicy and sour but balanced.
- Transfer clams with liquids to a shallow bowl and garnish with diced shallots, basil leaves, and chili oil.
Recipe ByPete Amadhanirundr of Puma Yu's in Athens, Georgia