Before I stopped eating dairy I had a love affair with cheese. Unfortunately, cheese didn’t love me back. My body hasn’t been able to handle dairy products for as long as I can remember. In middle school and high school I would take Lactaid (an enzyme that helps break down lactose) so I could keep eating my favorite foods. After years of stomach cramps and digestive issues, I eliminated dairy products from my diet and I feel so much better. Besides, who needs cheese when you can make delicious vegan appetizers like these creamy cucumber and dill crostini?
Growing up my dad would make cute little toasts topped with cream cheese, sliced cucumber, and fresh dill. It was a staple appetizer at pool parties and holidays. They were nothing fancy, but the flavors and textures all just worked perfectly together. Now that summer is here I’m craving those little toasts so I decided to create my own version. The combination of cool cucumber and dill is so refreshing. And the cashew spread – heaven! If there are any leftovers, save the cashew cheese to spread on bagels or use it as a veggie dip.
If you’re adverse to dill, simply swap it for your favorite herb. Thinly sliced basil would taste fantastic. Parsley or mint would work, too! To get a jumpstart on party prep, you can make the cashew cheese spread ahead of time. The day of your barbecue, buy a fresh baguette and slice your cucumber. We got fancy and used a vegetable peeler to create thin strips, but you can also just slice it up. If you do this just be sure to remove the squishy, seedy part of the cucumber to avoid soggy crostini.
These creamy cucumber and dill crostini are loaded with savory flavor. Cucumber lends a nice crunch and fresh herbs take it to the next level.Print
These creamy cucumber and dill crostini are loaded with savory flavor. Cucumber lends a nice crunch and fresh herbs take it to the next level.
- 1 French baguette
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 1 cucumber, peeled
- ¼ cup water (plus more as needed)
- 2 tsp. lemon juice
- ½ tsp. salt
- ⅓ cup vegan mayo (we love Just Mayo)
- 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
- 2 Tbsp. fresh dill, chopped
- Preheat your oven to 350F. Slice the baguette on the diagonal into 1-inch chunks. Arrange them on a large baking sheet and brush the tops with olive oil. Bake for 5 to 7 minutes, until the bread is just barely golden. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
- Meanwhile, bring a small saucepan of water to a boil and add the cashews. Boil for 10 minutes; then use a slotted spoon to transfer the cashews to your blender.
- While the cashews boil, use a vegetable peeler to create long, thin strips out of the cucumber. Work your way around and stop when you reach the center of the cucumber (you’ll see the seeds). Set the cucumber strips between two paper towels and gently press to remove excess moisture.
- Along with the cashews, add the water, lemon juice, salt, vegan mayo, and Italian seasoning to your blender. Blend until completely smooth, scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula as needed. Add another tablespoon of water to keep things moving. Adjust salt and lemon juice to taste (I didn’t add anything).
- Spread a generous spoonful of the cashew cheese onto each piece of toasted bread, followed by a strip of cucumber. Sprinkle with fresh dill.
If you’re not planning to eat right away, cover and refrigerate the vegan cheese and assemble the crostini just before serving.