Christmas Tree-O of Crostini’s

This is a recipe I’m really excited to share with you. I wanted to create a colourful plate of canapés, that is something extra special to serve up this festive period or for any gathering when you need a tasty bite to get you through until dinner. I was so happy with the result fo these and the reaction they got when the family tucked into them. We ate them for days after!

This plate of crostini’s has three different toppings, hence the name, three contrasting but complimentary flavours: 1.Pea and Mint Purée with caramelised onions 2. Mushroom Pâté 3. Tomato, basil and cashew cream cheese.

Each element of this recipe is fairly simple to make, but you bring it together and it creates a mouthwatering experience. You can even make the Mushroom Pâté and Pea Purée in advance to make this quick and easy on the day.

With this recipe I served up 4 of each flavoured crostini (so 12 over all), but with the amount of mixture left you can easily keep going, I think this could make about 12 of each. So really, it’s up to you how big you want to go… I mean, how hungry are your guests? How long is it until dinner?!

Tips

Try not to let the amount of elements put you off. Each step is easy and you can do it, one bit at a time and put each dish into the fridge whilst you do the next.

With the Mushroom pâté, you can opt for no walnuts, if you want a nut free version and it is still a very tasty pâté.

5 from 1 vote
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Christmas Tree-O of Crostini's

Three crostini's - 1. Pea and mint purée with caramalized onions 2. Mushroom and walnut pâté 3.Tomato, basil and cashew cream cheese

Course Appetizer
Keyword cashew cream, crostinis, mushroom pate, pea and mint, tomato and basil
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings 12 plus

Ingredients

For the Mushroom Pâté

  • 1 small leek
  • 1 onion
  • 150 g chestnut mushrooms
  • 100 g shitake mushrooms
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 50 g walnuts you can leave these out for nut-free version
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 100 g cooked puy lentils we use merchant brand
  • 2 tsp wholegrain or dijon mustard
  • 2 Tbsp sherry (or white wine) check it's vegan
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce or tamari
  • 1 tsp tomato pureè
  • 1 Tbsp fresh thyme
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh parsely to serve

For the Caramalized onions

  • 2 red onions
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1-2 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 pinch salt

For the Pea and Mint Purée

  • 300 g frozen peas
  • 20 g fresh mint leaves
  • ½ lemon juiced
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper

For the cashew cream

  • 60 g plain cashew nuts
  • 50 ml oat milk
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1.5 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 squeeze lemon juice
  • 1 pinch salt

For the tomato mix

  • 250 g mixed coloured cherry tomatoes
  • 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar or white wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 pinch salt
  • balsamic glaze this is thicker than balsamic vinegar
  • fresh basil leaves to serve

For the Crostinis

  • ½ large baguette to make 12, or more depending on how many you want to make!
  • olive oil for brushing

Instructions

Mushroom Pâté

  1. Start by maknig the mushroom pâté. Peel and slice the onion, trim the leek at both ends and slice into half moons. Remove any dirt from the mushrooms and trim any woody ends of the shitakes. Then, quarter all the mushrooms and peel and slice 2 garlic cloves.

  2. In a small frying pan, dry fry the walnuts for about 2 minutes until they turn slightly golden. Then take off the heat and set aside.

  3. Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in a medium frying pan and when hot, add in the onions and a pinch of salt. Cook and stir for 5 minutes before adding the leeks and garlic, stir for another minute. Add in the mushrooms, 1 Tbsp vegan butter and season with salt and pepper. Cook for another 2 mins. Next, Add in the cooked puy lentils, sherry, thyme, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, tomato purée and mustard and give it a good stir together then cook down for 5 minutes.

  4. Tip the the mixture into a food proccesor and blitz until it comes together, but still has a little texture to it. Pour the pâte into a bowl and pop it in the fridge until you're ready to spread it on the crostinis (If you leave it in the fridge a little while or overnight, it thickens up nicely).

For the Caramalized onions

  1. Peel and slice the onions. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan and when hot, add the onions with a generous pinch of salt. Cook on a very low heat for around 20 minutes. Stir occasionally to check it's not sticking to the bottom, add a tiny splash of water if so, but resisit stirring too much. After 20 minutes add the balsamic vinegar and sugar and cook for at least another 20 minutes until soft and caramalized. Meanwhile, you can get cracking on the pea and mint purée.

For the Pea and Mint Pureé

  1. Tip the peas into a saucepan and cover with boiling water. Bring back to the boil and cook for 3-4 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool. Once they are cool place the peas into a food proccessor along with the fresh mint leaves, juice of ½ lemon, olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Whizz into a pureé.

For the Cashew Cream

  1. Next, make up the cashew cream. Place the cashews in a bowl of boiling water, cover and leave for 10 minutes. Then, drain off the water, tip the cashews into a blender with the rest of the cashew cream ingredients and blitz until smooth.

For the tomato mix

  1. Dice the tomatoes into small pieces and tip into a bowl with the red wine vinegar, olive oil and a pinch of salt.

To make the Crostinis

  1. Heat the oven to 180°(fan). Slice the baguette into roughly 1cm thick slices. Place them onto a baking tray and brush with a little olive oil. Place in the oven for 3-5 minutes until they crisp up a little. They don't need long as they will harden when they cool.

  2. To serve, spread the mushroom pâté on four of the crostinis, with a sprinkling of fresh parsely on top. Then, spread the pea and mint purée on another four crostinis and place a tsp of caramalized onions on top of each one. Finally, spread the tomato mixture on the final four crostinis with a gentle dollop of cashew cream and garnished with a fresh basil leaf and balsamic glaze. When these 12 have been devoured, you will have enough fillings to make more if you wish. They will last in the fridge, covered, for 3 days.