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Kentucky Derby Cuisine: Mini Hot Browns

April 12, 2013

The Kentucky Derby kicks off on May 3rd this year, which means we're just a few weeks away from snacking on burgoo (the Bluegrass State's official dish) while sipping a cool and refreshing Mint Julep. Whether you'll be tuning in from the track or from the comfort of your couch, no Run for the Roses celebration would be complete without a taste of Kentucky's most iconic sandwich: the Hot Brown. We recently caught up with Laurent Géroli, executive chef of the Brown Hotel in Louisville, which is where the Hot Brown made its debut back in 1926. And while we're all for an entrée-size version of the famous open-face sandwich starring layers of sliced turkey, Mornay sauce, bacon, and tomatoes, Géroli has shared a finger-friendly take that transforms the classic flavors into a bite-size tart shell. Get race-ready with his recipe for Mini Hot Browns then check out our complete guide to Kentucky Derby Cuisine for more celebratory cocktails, recipes, and entertaining tips. Mini Hot Browns Recipe by Brown Hotel executive chef Laurent Géroli Makes 12 appetizers Ingredients For the Mornay sauce: 1 Tablespoon whole butter 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour 1/2 cup heavy cream 2 Tablespoons shredded Pecorino Romano cheese Salt and pepper For the tarts: 12 mini phyllo tart shells 1/2 cup cold Mornay sauce (see recipe below) 1/2 cup roasted turkey breast, chopped fine 1/4 cup diced tomatoes 1 slice cooked bacon, chopped fine 1 teaspoon paprika 1/4 cup grated Romano cheese 1 teaspoon chopped parsley Preparation Make the Mornay sauce: Melt the butter in a saucepan and slowly whisk in the flour until combined to form a thick paste or roux. Continue to cook the roux for 2 minutes over medium-low heat, stirring frequently. Whisk the heavy cream into the roux and cook over medium heat until the cream begins to simmer, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the sauce from the heat and slowly whisk in the Pecorino Romano cheese until the sauce is smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste. Chill. Assemble the tarts: Heat the oven to 325°F. Place the tart shells 1/2-inch apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. In a mixing bowl, mix together the cold Mornay sauce, turkey and tomato. Fill a pastry bag with the mix, and then carefully fill each tart shell to the top. Sprinkle each with bacon, paprika, and Romano cheese. Place the tarts in the oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until they're heated all the way through. Garnish with parsley, and serve warm. This recipe has not been tested by Epicurious. Photo: Courtesy of the Brown Hotel

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