Hot Brown

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 35 min
  • Active: 35 min
  • Yield: 4 hot brown sandwiches
On any given day in the 1920s, more than 1,200 people would dance the night away at Louisville’s Brown Hotel. When the fun wrapped up in the wee hours, the partiers would be ravenous, so hotel chef Fred Schmidt created this spin on ham and eggs: an open-face turkey sandwich with bacon and a Mornay sauce. The hotel still serves the dish, but if you can’t get there, try this variation on it. We crumbled the bacon so you get a bit in each bite!



  1. Preheat the broiler. Cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel–lined plate. Pour out all but about 1 tablespoon fat from the skillet.
  2. Make the sauce: Add the onion to the skillet and cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring, 1 more minute. Increase the heat to medium high, add the milk and chicken broth and bring to a boil, stirring. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, stirring, until slightly thickened, about 6 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in 1 cup cheese. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Arrange the bread on a baking sheet. Spread each slice with mustard, then drizzle with some of the sauce and top with the tomato. Add the turkey to the skillet with the remaining sauce and toss to coat. Divide the turkey among the bread, then sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup cheese. Broil until golden, about 2 minutes.
  4. Crumble the bacon over the sandwiches. Sprinkle with the parsley.