The Kentucky derby is right around the corner and I could not think of anything better to serve to your friends than a hot brown sandwich, with some mint juleps of course. This is an open-face sandwich with thinly sliced turkey covered in a homemade cheese sauce and broiled until hot and bubbly. As if it could not get any better, it’s finished with a tomato slice and peppered bacon. This is one serious sandwich that is huge on flavor and is serious comfort food.
- .33 cups Tillamook orange cheddar cheese, grated
- .25 lb Sliced turkey breast
- 2 Ripe tomatoes, sliced thick
- 4 Strips bacon
- 2 Slices good sandwich bread, toasted
- 1 tbsp Fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 cups Tillamook extra sharp white cheddar cheese, grated
- 2 tbsp Tillamook unsalted butter
- 2 tbsp All-purpose flour
- 1 cups Whole milk
- Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 tsp Kosher salt
- Freshly cracked pepper
- For the Cheese Sauce: Add the butter to a small saucepan preheating over medium-low heat.
- When melted, add the flour and constantly whisk (or it will burn) until the mixture is dark blonde in color, about 4-5 minutes. While whisking, slowly add the milk and raise the heat to medium. Keep whisking so no lumps form in the sauce and cook until the mixture gets rich, creamy, and a little thick, about 5 minutes. You know it's ready when the sauce coats the back of a spoon.
- Take off the heat and add a small handful of white cheddar and whisk until it's incorporated, continue doing this until you have used 1 cup of the grated cheese.
- Put back over low heat and season with the nutmeg, salt, and a couple cracks of fresh pepper. Mix and check for seasoning.
- Take off heat and set aside.
- For the Grilled Tomato Slices: Preheat a cast iron grill pan over high heat. Quickly sear one side of the tomato until char marks appear, no more than one minute, take off the heat and set aside.
- For the Peppered Bacon: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lay bacon on a sheet tray and grind some pepper on each slice. Bake for 12 minutes until crispy, take out and set aside.
- To Build the Sandwich: Preheat broiler to low and make sure there is 6 inches between the heating element and the rack. Using a cast iron pan or sheet pan, lay both toasted bread slices down.
- Top each with 2-3 slices of roasted turkey, and one slice of fresh tomato (not grilled), season tomato with a pinch of salt.
- Top each sandwich with a generous amount of cheese sauce. Make sure the sauce is overflowing the edges a little bit.
- Top cheese sauce with shredded orange cheddar and place under the broiler for 5 minutes. Keep your eye on it the entire time so it doesn't burn. You want the cheese sauce to bubble and get brown in spots.
- Take pan out of the oven and top each with a grilled tomato slice, two slices of bacon in a criss-cross pattern, and garnish with chopped parsley.