Sunday, November 29, 2009

DSS - Thanksgiving - Day 5

Leftovers. No Thanksgiving holiday is complete until you start trying to figure out what to do with all that turkey you roasted. The choices of leftover turkey dishes are endless. Turkey tetrazzini, turkey pot pie, hot turkey sandwiches, turkey a la king and turkey with rice. For my first leftover dish I decided to try making a Hot Brown.
The history of the Hot Brown is found in the past of the Brown Hotel in Louisville Kentucky. Like all great food legends, this one was born from an effort to please the desires of it's customers. Back in the '20's the Brown would sponsor a dinner dance. Those of you well versed in night life activities know that after a hard night of dancing and imbibing, sustenance is needed to recharge or recover from said activities. Apparently the Brown's patrons grew tired of the ham and eggs the kitchen offered up so Chef Fred Schmidt came up with a hot open faced turkey sandwich they called the Hot Brown. (You can find the history and recipe here) It was a huge hit and another legendary American food dish was born. To build your own Hot Brown you start with a couple of slices of Texas Toast with the crusts cut off. You're going to need that thickness from Texas Toast because it's got to hold up to your sauce. Add a layer of turkey on top of your toast, slice a couple of tomatoes and set them off to the side of your bread. Next you need to make your Mornay sauce. A Mornay is simply a B├ęchamel sauce to which you add grated cheese. When I went to check out the Google Images for a Hot Brown, it looks like more often than not, cheddar or American cheese is used but I'm following the hotel's recipe which calls for Pecorino Romano cheese. I did deviate from the recipe by using half heavy cream and half whole milk for the sauce. One quart of heavy cream is a whole lot of fat for one serving of sandwich. Once your sauce is bubbly and hot and all your cheese has melted into the sauce, you liberally smother your toast and turkey. Add one last sprinkling of cheese on top of your sandwich and pop it under the broiler. Once it's warm and your cheese has melted, take it out, sprinkle the top with paprika and parsley and add your crossed slices of bacon and serve while still bubbling.

I won't kid you, this is a heart attack on a plate. I only used half the amount of sauce and that was still plenty. Still it tastes fantastic and the flavors are so divergent from your just finished Thanksgiving Day meals that you won't feel like you're eating leftover turkey yet again. However those of you on Lipitor or Crestor, perhaps you should give this sandwich a pass. It's that decadent.

KARMIC KITCHEN 2009 THANKS - BACONIZATION

14 comments:

Wii Bitch said...

Shamu! you and I are going to have a very LONG talk about this post.

now get down and give me 20 push-ups.

Making Space said...

Hmmmm.... so, when I make that cheese sauce (albeit with milk not cream) and mix it with elbow macaroni, and serve it to my kids, I should call it Rustic Pasta with a Cheddar Mornay Sauce. No more Mr. Macaroni and Cheese!!!!!!

That sandwich looks freaky good. I'm guessing if people were drunk enough they wouldn't know how much fat they were eating...

Big Shamu said...

Actually MS, you're right. That's exactly how I was taught to make Mac and Cheese, a white sauce with milk and cheese mixed in, then mixed with al dente pasta, put in a baking dish, covered with breadcrumbs and bacon then baked. My mom never used the words Mornay, B├ęchamel or roux but that's what she was making.

Wii Biatch, only 20? I was thinking 40 and one hour boxing might be more appropriate.

LaDivaCucina said...

Sham, you amaze me with what you remember...Past Top Chef contestants, their names, obscure dishes....I always forget about this sandwich, have never made it but it has piqued my curiosity in the past.

Gotta tell you, it's too rich for La Diva!!! I'm not a huge "cream" sauce person but that's because I find that if I eat food that is too rich, I get ill. Can't eat softshell crabs, can't eat too much drawn butter and lobster and definitely don't think I could eat much of this. (Ok, maybe half?) But damn, it looks mighty good.

LOVED WHAT MS said! haha! Yes, Rustic pasta with a cheddar mornay sauce!

LaDivaCucina said...

PS: Scary as it seems, you snitches (Boxer and Sham!) are making me WANT to get WII!!!!! F*ck, what's wrong with me?! I even asked hubby how much they were..........

Big Shamu said...

Actually La Diva, when I was checking out the history of the Hot Brown, there's a funny little blurb about an appearance the last Top Chef winner made while mistakenly identifying the name Hot Brown with it's visual appearance...not the name of the Hotel of it's origin. BRILLIANT.

LaDivaCucina said...

Of course it was Hosea!!! One thing I've learned about speaking in public...you better know your schnitzel before you speak!!!

Dani said...

If I do a pot pie with turkey, can I still use chicken stock in it?

Big Shamu said...

Sure. The dog will love it no matter what stock you use. (snicker)

Dani said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Ollie is so lucky we love him!!

Buzz Kill said...

I have never heard of the Hot Brown (and that name is conjuring some nasty images in my head). Great story and it looks pretty good too.

Big Shamu said...

Actually Troll did a lighter version for the Dim Sum around the Kentucky Derby, where I'm sure Hot Browns are very popular.

LaDivaCucina said...

Maybe that's where I heard/seen it before too.....Still, your memory is great! Sharp as a tack girl.

moi said...

La, la, la, la, la. I'm not listening! Because unlike La Diva, I'm all about the full fat.