The most exciting two minutes in sports is happening this weekend — and how will you be satisfying your appetite as you place your bets?
The Hot Brown — an open-faced sandwich featuring crispy bacon, roasted turkey and rich Mornay sauce on thick Texas toast — made its debut at the Brown Hotel in Louisville during the 1920s when over 1,200 guests attending a dinner dance were looking for something to eat aside from the usual ham and eggs.
It was then that Chef Fred Schmidt created the Hot Brown, which has since become a Kentucky Derby tradition, along with mint juleps and of course, Derby pie.
While there are now several variations of the sandwich, this traditional recipe comes straight from the source. Enjoy!
A Hot Brown Sandwich for the Kentucky Derby
- 2 oz. whole butter
- 2 oz. all purpose flour
- 16 oz. heavy cream
- 1/2 cup Pecorino Romano cheese, plus 1 tablespoon for garnish
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 14 oz. sliced roasted turkey breast
- 2 slices of Texas toast (crust trimmed)
- 4 slices of crispy bacon
- 2 Roma tomatoes, sliced in half
- In a two-quart saucepan, melt butter and slowly whisk in flour until combined and forms a thick paste (roux). Continue to cook roux for two minutes over medium-low heat, stirring frequently.
- Whisk heavy cream into the roux 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 Mornay sauce is smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- For each Hot Brown, place one slice of toast in an oven safe dish and cover with 7 ounces of turkey.
- Take the two halves of Roma tomato and set them alongside the base of turkey and toast.
- Next, pour one half of the Mornay sauce to completely cover the dish. Sprinkle with additional Pecorino Romano cheese.
- Place entire dish under a broiler until cheese begins to brown and bubble.
- Remove from broiler, cross two pieces of crispy bacon on top, sprinkle with paprika and parsley, and serve immediately.