Aliya LeeKong

Aliya LeeKong is an American chef, television personality and author of the cookbook Exotic Table - Flavors, Inspiration, and Recipes from Around the World – to Your Kitchen.

Aliya Leekong
Born (1978-02-18) February 18, 1978
EducationColumbia University
OccupationCelebrity chef
Known forTelevision Personality

Early life

Aliya LeeKong was born in New York City and raised in Central Florida.[1] A first generation American, her parents are Indo-Pakistani and Tanzanian immigrants.[2] After graduating from Brown University and Columbia Business School, LeeKong went on to work in New York City, before finding her way to cooking.[1]


LeeKong trained at the International Culinary Center and has traveled to over 30 countries in the past 10 years to study under international home cooks.[3] Countries include Brazil, India, Thailand, Turkey, Chile, South Africa, and Peru.[4] LeeKong initially worked at New York City's Jean Georges, Devi, and Per Se.[5] From March 2011 until January 2014, she served as Chef and Culinary Creative Director of the Indian restaurant Junoon.[6] A television personality, LeeKong has appeared on Food Network’s "Beat Bobby Flay," Chef Marks the Spot, NBC Weekend Today, CBS New York, Men's Health: Guy Gourmet New England Cable News Peggy's Kitchen Cures, What Would Julieanna Do, and Nirmala's Spice World on Veria Living.Leekong was also featured in Kitchen Casino[7]

To make cooking accessible and educational for children, LeeKong established an app called Issa’s Edible Adventures which allows users to digitally travel around the world to learn about food types and culture in different countries. LeeKong was inspired by games she played with her daughter to teach her about multiculturalism.[8][9]

Personal life

LeeKong lives in New York City with her husband, her two daughters[10] and two dogs. LeeKong is affiliated with Sponsors for Educational Opportunity and The Family Center.



  1. Blackmore-Dobbyn, Andrew. "Aliya LeeKong: Behind a Michelin Star". Huffington Post. Retrieved October 6, 2011.
  2. LeeKong, Aliya (November 2013). Exotic Table: Flavors, inspiration, and recipes from around the world--to your kitchen. Adams Media. p. 3. ISBN 978-1440550041.
  3. Martin, Richard. "Peruvian Clams a la Parmesana". Food Republic. Archived from the original on April 19, 2014. Retrieved November 15, 2013.
  4. Blackmore-Dobbyn, Andrew. "Aliya LeeKong: Behind a Michelin Star". Huffington Post. Retrieved October 11, 2011.
  5. Leong, Richard (July 1, 2014). "World Chefs: Aliya LeeKong adopts global flavors for home kitchens". Reuters. Retrieved July 1, 2014.
  6. Stahl, Jason. "Junoon's Super Chef Aliya LeeKong's Menu of Downtown's Best Restaurants". Downtown Magazine. Archived from the original on April 21, 2013. Retrieved April 18, 2013.
  8. "Food52: A Cooking App for Kids So Fun You'll Want to Use It Yourself".
  9. "MSNBC: Elevator pitch: Issa's Edible Adventures".
  10. "Encantos Partners With Award-Winning Chef Aliya LeeKong to Develop New Food-Inspired Preschool Brand ISSA'S EDIBLE ADVENTURES™". Business Wire. 6 Feb 2020.


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