Chef David Hawksworth serves an array of vegetable crostini at the bar of his namesake restaurant in Vancouver's Rosewood Hotel Georgia. To intensify the flavor of boiled beets and form a rich glaze, he cooks them a second time in sherry vinegar and sugar.
3 (about 3/4 pound total) beets
4 sprigs thyme
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/2 cup sherry vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 sprig rosemary
12 slices (4-by-2-inch) dense whole-grain bread, brushed with olive oil and toasted
1/2 pound burrata cheese, cut into 12 pieces
12 sprigs (small) watercress
Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
Flaky salt, such as Maldon, for garnish
How to Make It
In a medium saucepan, cover the beets with cold water. Add the thyme sprigs, black peppercorns and red wine vinegar and bring to a boil. Simmer, partially covered, until the beets are tender, about 45 minutes, replenishing the water if necessary. Drain the beets, then peel and cut them into 1/4-inch dice.
Return the diced beets to the saucepan. Add the sherry vinegar, sugar, rosemary sprig and 1/4 cup of water and bring to a boil. Cook over moderately high heat until a syrupy glaze forms, about 12 minutes. Discard the rosemary sprig and season the beets with salt.
Top each whole-grain toast with a spoonful of the glazed beets, a piece of burrata and a sprig of watercress. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil, garnish with the flaky salt and serve.