This easy Caribbean curry dip is the perfect complement to crudités, packing just the right balance of sweet, salt, and spice. It’s a perfect companion for sundowners on the terrace!
Spring is in the air in Johannesburg. There’s less of a chill in the mornings. Birdsong is returning to the trees. Our markets are filled with gorgeous strawberries. And, suddenly, we’re all dreaming of long, lazy evenings on the terrace with friends and family.
As the weather warms up, families migrate outdoors, and enjoy sitting outside in the evening, sipping cocktails, listening to music, and swapping tales of the day. We also enjoy long casual meals that are a bit more like grazing.
At home, we like to start with a big selection of crudités and fill up on those, before moving on to charcuterie or grilled meats, and a light, seasonal fruit dessert. This is the type of casual meal that can stretch out for the better part of a weekend evening.
However, the simpler the meal, the more important it is to get everything just right. This is especially true when it comes to crudités. If they’re super fresh, and paired with a flavourful dip, crudités can be a dream. However, if the dip or seasonings aren’t right, crudités become a disappointing starter.
The key to success lies in the flavour of the dip. This is why I like to have a selection of customised spice blends on hand, such as Caribbean curry powder. With these spice blends in your arsenal, preparing rich dips on the fly becomes a breeze! Toss in a bit of salt, a handful of fresh herbs, and you’re good to go.
Why Add Fresh Herbs?
Herbs add an additional burst of freshness to Caribbean curry dip. However, the addition of fresh herbs to this (or any dish) is also good for your health.
While each herb (and spice) has its own specific benefits (which we’ll get into another day), adding handfuls of fresh herbs to your daily regime:
- Supports healthy digestion,
- Provides a burst of healthy antioxidants,
- Strengthens the nervous system, and
- Supports your immune system.
This ought to be reason enough to add fresh herbs to anything and everything!
You don’t have to stick to the herbs I’ve listed in the recipe – coriander and chives. This is a combination that I like. However, I’m well aware that not everybody likes certain herbs — particularly coriander.
So, let your tastes, your terrace herb garden, or your fridge be your guide. You can swap in other herbs with equally good results! Some herbs I’ve used in the past, include:
- Parsley, and
About the Recipe
This is a very simple recipe — almost a template — that I use to make lots of different dips and spreads. This time, I’ve chosen to use crème fraîche. I like the contrast of creamy richness with the light crunch of fresh veggies. However, should you have particular dietary concerns or not find crème fraîche in your local market, you could just as easily use sour cream or yogurt instead.
Once you start making this simple dip, I hope that crudités will become an integral part of your family’s terrace routine and that you will experiment with other combinations and flavours. Most of all, I hope you and your family enjoy this dip every bit as much as mine does. Bon appétit!
Creamy Caribbean Curry Dip
Easy, creamy, and delicious, this Caribbean Curry Dip is the perfect complement to seasonal crudités. A wonderful companion to sundowners, and a great way to get picky eaters to enjoy fresh vegetables.
- 250 ml (8 oz) crème fraîche
- 1 Tablespoon Caribbean curry powder
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt (or to taste)
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper powder
- 1 Tablespoon fruit chutney
- 1 handful fresh coriander, finely chopped
- 1 handful fresh chives, finely chopped
- Step 1 Empty the crème fraîche into a small bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients. Stir vigorously to combine.
- Step 2 Serve immediately with an assortment of fresh crudités, such as: cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, baby fennel, carrots, celery, green onions, or radishes. Sliced apples and pears are also delicious.