Brie, Rhubarb, and Green Peppercorn Crostini
1 pound rhubarb stalks (3-4 stalks), leaves trimmed and discarded, stems sliced 1/4 in. thick.
5 tablespoons Grandpa’s Honey
1 teaspoon Cucina Viva balsamic vinegar
1 heaping tbsp. Alexis green peppercorns in brine, drained
1 Marczyk French baguette (at least 14 in. long)
2 tablespoons EVOO olive oil
11 ounces very ripe triple-cream cheese such as Belletoile, or St. Angel or other brie or camembert, at room temperature.
1. Cook rhubarb with honey in a medium saucepan over medium heat 6 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until rhubarb is very soft and just starting to fall apart. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. Remove pan from heat and add vinegar and peppercorns; let sit at room temperature (so flavors meld) at least 1 hour.
3. Slice baguette on the diagonal into 1/2-in.-thick slices to make 26. Put slices on a baking sheet, brush one side with oil, and bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Let cool.
4. Cut cheese into 26 thick slices, each about as long as a baguette slice.
5. Spoon a scant 1 tbsp. rhubarb mixture onto each baguette slice. Top each with a slice of cheese (or two smaller pieces) and serve immediately. Or serve toasts, topping, and cheese separately and let guests assemble the crostini.
Sunset Magazine, 2011