Kentucky Hot Brown...a Derby Favorite!

The Hot Brown was invented and made famous at the Brown Hotel in Louisville, Ky by Chef Fred Schmidtt.   Back in the 1920's the Brown Hotel had about 1200 guests each night for dinner and dancing into the wee hours of the morning.  The partiers would get hungry and tired and would end up in the hotel restaurant for a bite to eat.  They were getting tired of the same sandwiches and wanted something  a little different so Chef Schmidtt created the 'Hot Brown' and it was an instant hit. 

 Here is what you will need to make two Kentucky Hot Browns:

3/4 lb thinly sliced roasted turkey breast
6 slices bacon cooked crisp
4 Tbs butter
4 Tbs flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
dash of cayenne
2 cups half and half cream
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
four slices of toasted bread  (Texas Toast or Italian Bread)

First make a Mornay sauce, which is just a fancy schmancy word for a white sauce with some Parmesan cheese in it.   Melt the butter and flour together and cook the flour just a little, slowly add the half and half, salt pepper, and cayenne.   You can do this on the stove top or I do it in the microwave.  Whisk it together and bring to a gentle boil and then turn it down and whisk again.  If doing it in the microwave,  microwave on high about 3-4 minutes and whisk until smooth.

Add the Parmesan cheese and whisk to melt and blend until smooth.

Toast the bread and arrange it like this.  If you are using Texas Toast, you can just use one piece.  I prefer this Italian bread for this.

These are placed under the broiler, so either arrange them in individual serving dishes that are ovenproof or in a baking dish and then transfer them to a plate with a wide spatula.  Stack the turkey slices and pour the sauce over each one.

Place two slices of tomatoes on each serving.  Place under the broiler until they are starting to brown and are bubbly.  When they come out place three strips of bacon crisscrossed on each and sprinkle with more Parmesan. 

Kentucky Hot Brown!


  1. that does sound delicious, my mouth is watering. yum! yum!

  2. Love me a Good Kentucky Hot Brown... :-) Thank's for reminding me about one of my favorite Sandwiches...

  3. I love me a Good Kentucky "Hot Brown"... Thank you for reminding me about one of my favorite sandwiches... :-)

  4. We had these for lunch right after we watched the Derby today. So delicious!

  5. It looks and sounds great. LOL, I just can't consider that bread Italian, no matter what the label says. I remember as a kid my mother giving me 20 cents Sunday morning to go to the bakery to get Italian bread. It would still be warm from the oven, and finished by the time I got home. Got another 20 cents? She'd laugh and send me back.

  6. wow I never heard of this Thank You Kathy

  7. Can you clarify for me the change between the last two pictures - after you have broiled the tomatoes do you then cover them with additional sauce (and broil just a bit more)? The tomatoes seem to have disappeared in the bacon picture. I have some Italian bread I made a couple days ago and I think this would be a very good use for it.

    1. You can add the tomato or not. My husband doesn't like the tomato on his, so the last picture is just the one I made for him. You put the sauce on, add tomatoes and broil, then add the bacon.

  8. 4 slices of toasted bread.. How many does this feed?

  9. Love, Love, Love 'Kentucky Hot Browns. In addition to the turkey and bacon, I also put a very thin slice of country ham on mine. Either way, they're SO GOOD!!!!!!!

  10. First ate these in Lexington KY... The cheese was a little different. We actually just had them last night!! So so good.



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