I love preparing great dishes using the leftovers from the grill or barbecue, and today’s column will introduce you to one of the best sandwiches ever created ... no lie.
If you have spent time in Louisville you have heard of “The Hot Brown.” It is an open faced sandwich that traditionally includes crispy bacon, toast, sliced turkey, cheese and a cheesy Mornay or Bèchamel sauce. This is a fantastic way to use leftover beer can chicken, grilled or barbecued turkey. Any poultry could be used.
The history of the Hot Brown is very interesting, and is described as follows on the official website of The Brown Hotel.
“With so much to boast — award-winning dining, breathtaking turn-of-the-century architecture, and attentive, caring service — some may wonder, ‘Why the Hot Brown?’” Here is the history behind this now legendary dish...
“In the 1920s, The Brown Hotel drew more than 1,200 guests each evening for its dinner dance. In the wee hours of the morning, the guests would grow tired of dancing and retire to the restaurant for a bite to eat. Diners were growing rapidly bored with the traditional ham and eggs, so Chef Fred Schmidt set out to create something new to tempt his guests’ palates. His unique creation was an open-faced turkey sandwich with bacon and a delicate Mornay sauce. Exemplifying our unending dedication to serving our guests, The Hot Brown was born!
And now The Hot Brown — a Louisville tradition with worldwide appeal — has been featured in ‘Southern Living Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, NBC's Today Show, The Wall Street Journal, as well as being included as a regular entry in many of the finest cookbooks.”
You can view an instructional video on how to make this great sandwich by visiting http://www.bbq- my-way.com/hot-brown-recipe.html. If you give this recipe a try, I can almost guarantee you it will quickly become your standard way of using leftover chicken or Thanksgiving turkey.
• Cooked turkey or chicken: Weber turkey or beer can chicken would be perfect. Approximately 2.5 lbs.
• Sliced bread
• 8 oz of mushrooms
• Two chopped shallots
• Eight slices of cooked bacon
• Two tablespoons of flour
• 1/4 stick of butter
• One cup of shredded Swiss cheese
• One cup plus two tablespoons of milk
• 1/2 teaspoon of poultry seasoning
• 1/8 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
Toast the sliced bread and set aside. Thinly slice the chicken or turkey and set aside. Chop the shallot and saute in one tablespoon of butter until translucent. (About 3 minutes) Add sliced mushroom and saute for three minutes. Set shallots and mushrooms aside.
To Make the sauce: Melt 1/4 stick of butter and mix in 2 tablespoons of butter. Once mixture is smooth, slowly whisk in milk. Add poultry seasoning, cayenne pepper and 1/4 cup of the cheese. This is called a Bèchamel Sauce.
Assemble the sandwich: Place turkey or chicken on bread. Spoon on mushroom mixture and then the sauce. Then lay bacon on the sandwich and top off with Swiss cheese.
Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for five minutes then broil at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for two minutes or until the cheese is melted.
If you drink wine, a spicy Shiraz would be a great pairing. If you prefer beer, Amber ale or a lager like Oktoberfest, brown ale or a strong golden ale like triple would match up perfectly.
Dave Lobeck is an Edward Jones Financial Advisor in Jeffersonville by day and a BBQ enthusiast on nights and weekends. Liz is his wife. He is also a Kansas City Barbecue Society judge. You can contact Dave with your BBQ and grilling questions by emailing him at email@example.com or at www.BBQ-My-Way.com. He is also available to speak at your next meeting or function.