Hot Brown Recipe for Derby Day

Hot Brown Recipe for Derby Day
The Hot Brown is a sandwich that originated at the Brown Hotel in Louisville, Kentucky in the 1920’s. It is composed of sliced turkey or chicken breast on toast, covered with Mornay sauce and topped with either tomato slices or sautéed mushrooms and crisp bacon; the concoction is broiled until bubbly. Although this delicious sandwich (always referred to as simply “Hot Brown” and never “Hot Brown Sandwich” by Kentuckians) isn’t served much outside of Kentucky, it is found on most restaurant menus around the state. Published recipes for this famous sandwich vary, especially for the sauce – some starting with canned soup and others using cheddar or Swiss cheese. However, Mornay sauce, which was used in the original Hot Brown, is so quick, there is really no need to cheapen the dish with substandard variations.
The Hot Brown is considered a must-serve-dish on Derby Day, which is always held on the first Saturday in May. It is easily and quickly made, especially if slices of turkey breast from the Slow Cooker Turkey Module are already in the freezer. Slices of chicken breast can be substituted for the turkey, however, make sure the turkey or chicken is sliced from the breast and not deli slices that are formed and pressed. The delicious sauce takes about 15 minutes to make; the entire dish can be put together and served in less than 30 minutes.

4 Servings

Mornay Sauce
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons minced onion
2 1/2 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 egg yolks
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

8 slices bread, crusts removed and toasted
12 ounces turkey breast slices from the Slow Cooker Turkey Breast Module (or chicken breast slices)
8 tomato slices
8 slices fully cooked bacon
  1. Mornay Sauce: Melt the butter in a saucepan; add the onions and stir over medium heat for 1 minute.
  2. Stir in the flour and cook 1 minute.
  3. Whisk in the milk, salt, parsley, and black pepper.
  4. Continue to cook over medium heat, stirring every minute or so, until the mixture thickens.
  5. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks and whipping cream.
  6. When the milk mixture has thickened, gradually add a few tablespoons of the mixture to the egg yolk mixture, whisking until the mixture is smooth.
  7. Whisk the egg yolk mixture into the milk mixture and cook for a minute or two until heated through; stir in the Parmesan cheese.
  8. Assembly: Place a piece of toast on the bottom of each of four oven-proof individual casserole dishes or on small oven-proof plates.
  9. Top with the turkey breast slices; cover with a generous layer of the sauce.
  10. Place two tomato slices on top of the sauce and broil until the sauce begins to bubble and brown.
  11. Remove from the heat, criss-cross the bacon slices in the center, cut the remaining pieces of toast diagonally in half and place one on each side of the casserole dishes. Serve immediately.

Amount Per Serving
Calories 676 Calories from Fat 303
Percent Total Calories From:
Fat 45% Protein 27% Carb. 28%

Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 34 g
Saturated Fat 17 g
Cholesterol 259 mg
Sodium 1009 mg
Total Carbohydrate 48 g
Dietary Fiber 2 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 45 g

Vitamin A 51% Vitamin C 116% Calcium 0% Iron 26%

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This content was written by Karen Hancock. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Karen Hancock for details.