We throw two official staff parties every year-one in January after the craziness of Christmas parties has died down, and the other on Canada Day, just before the craziness of summer begins. There's also a Halloween party whenever someone has the desire to spearhead it. Union Street Cafe's staff are a family, albeit somewhat dysfunctional, and we truly love one another. Just as we're getting on each others' nerves, a little festive fun time can lift everyone's spirits and help us remember it's just a restaurant we work at, not an emergency room.
Of course, food figures into the fun even more then drink, so a couple weeks beforehand, I dream up some tasty snacks that bear almost no resemblance to what we serve at work. This past Thursday, that meant Greek Chicken Pitas, Vietnamese Meatball Sandwiches, miniature Hamburgers and a veggie tray with a super yummy and somehow retro-tasting Honey Curry Dip. I highly recommend it with the sweet little Sugar Snap Peas that are hitting their stride right about now.
I can also tell you that mayonnaise, being so utterly commonplace, becomes somewhat of a miracle (and I don't mean Whip) when made with your five year old son and two year old nephew. For that kind of fun, take one Egg and put it in a blender or food processor. Add a big pinch of Salt and a teaspoon of Dijon, plus a teaspoon of Vinegar or Lemon Juice. Get the motor running, then drizzle in 1½ cups Canola Oil very slowly. Watch their amazement (and maybe even your own) as the mayonnaise thickens before your very eyes! Then use it in this dip, and refrigerate the rest for your sandwiches, potato salad or perhaps licking off the spoon (you know who you are).
Honey Curry Dip
1 T. Curry Powder
1 T. Canola Oil
1 C. Sour Cream
½ C. Mayonnaise
¼ C. Honey (I use Foote Family Farms)
½ t. Salt
¼ C, Chopped Cilantro (optional, but highly recommended)
Heat the oil with the curry powder over medium high heat in a small skillet. After a minute or so ,the mixture will foam and smell very aromatic. (This step will absolutely elevate your dip above all other curry concoctions). Remove it from the heat. In a bowl, combine the sour cream, mayonnaise, honey and salt, and scrape in the curry and oil mixture. Add the cilantro and serve with assorted veggies, crackers (rice crackers are especially good) or potato chips. After chilling, the dip is thick enough to be a delicious condiment for burgers or folded into diced chicken, cranberries, celery and green onion for a killer Chicken Curry Salad.
I have personally banned this dip from my refrigerator since I cannot resist its call, but if you make a batch, please invite me over.