This open-face hot sandwich from “Southern Heat: New Southern Cooking Latin Style” should snap you back to life while offering a chance to use up any turkey you have tucked in the freezer.
A spicy variation of traditional Kentucky Hot Brown sandwich (created in Louisville in 1926), it gets extra kick from jalapeno peppers.
Mornay sauce isn’t low in fat. But as chef Anthony Lamas writes in the recipe, “that’s one of the best parts. I’m your chef, not your cardiologist.”
Kentucky Hot Brown With Manchego-Jalapeno Mornay
From “Southern Heat: New Southern Cooking Latin Style” by Anthony Lamas (Taunton Press, $35).
4 cups heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
2 teaspoons kosher salt
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 jalapenos, seeds and membranes removed, 1 diced and the other sliced for garnish
2 cups grated Manchego cheese
For hot browns:
12 slices French bread or Texas toast, toasted and crusts removed
1 1/2 pounds sliced roasted turkey breast
12 strips bacon, cooked
12 slices tomatoes, lightly salted
Grated manchego cheese, for topping
Heat oven to 450 degrees.
In medium saucepan, warm cream with nutmeg, pepper and salt over medium heat just until it bubbles around the edges. In another pan, melt butter over medium heat and add flour, whisking constantly to make a blond roux. Cook for 2 minutes to remove flour taste, then slowly whisk the warm cream into the roux. When mixture is slightly thickened, add diced jalapenos and cheese and whisk until cheese has melted.
Assemble sandwiches in 6 individual greased oval casserole dishes. In each casserole, place 2 slices of toast on bottom. Top with sliced turkey and 3/4 cup sauce. Top with 2 bacon slices, 2 tomato slices and grated Manchego. Place dishes in oven and cook until sauce is bubbly and cheese has melted, about 5 minutes. Garnish with jalapeno slices.
Yield: 6 servings.