Today is the day all of Louisville anticipates all year long — Kentucky Derby Day (or just “Derby Day” as we locals refer to it). Today, eyes all over the world will focus on our hometown and the home of the greatest two minutes in sports (not to mention this year’s NCAA basketball champs, the Cardinals of the University of Lousville!). Our city is overrun with celebrities. National television crews are swarming for the interview of the year. Horses and trainers and jockeys — oh my!
It’s also the one day a year I make the Kentucky Hot Brown for my family. You’ll understand why this is a once-a-year treat when you see the list of ingredients! This Hot Brown recipe is one I have adapted from the original recipe.
I know, most of you have no idea what that is. Trust me, all you need to know is that it is delicious. And it’s a Louisville tradition, originally created at one of our local hotels — The Brown (another Louisville tradition). Bobby Flay even visited a few years ago for a Hot Brown Throwdown.
I’m going to share my recipe, and I hope some day you’ll try it. Maybe next Derby Day! Or Thankgiving. Because you’ll need some delicious recipes for that leftover turkey.
- 1 stick butter
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 32 oz. heavy cream (can substitute whole milk)
- 1 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese, plus some for garnish (can substitute Parmesan or Gruyère)
- salt & pepper to taste
- pinch freshly grated nutmeg
- 36 oz. sliced roasted turkey breast
- 6 Slices of Texas toast
- 12 slices of crispy bacon
- 2 tomatoes, sliced thinly into 12 slices
- fresh parsley
In a large saucepan, melt the butter and slowly whisk in the flour until it is combined and forms a thick past. Continue to cook for two minutes over medium-low heat, stirring frequently. Whisk in heavy cream and cook over medium heat until the cream begins to simmer, about 2-3 minutes. Remove sauce from heat and slowly whisk in Pecorino Romano cheese until the sauce is smooth. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
Place the toast in an oven safe dish (I use a 9×13 glass dish — you could also make individual hot browns if you have individual-sized dishes). Cover each slice with 6 ounces of turkey. Place 2 slices of tomato on top of the turkey. Pour all of the sauce to completely cover the dish. Sprinkle with additional cheese. Place the dish under a broiler until sauce begins to brown and bubble. Remove from broiler, cross two pieces of crispy bacon on top, sprinkle with parsley, and serve immediately.
Makes 6 servings
Oh my, you are going to love this.