Recipe of the week: Louisville-inspired Hot Brown Pizza

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UnitedStatesofPizza_cover The Hot Brown sandwich has been around in Louisville, Ky., since 1923, and for nearly 40 years, Impellizzeri’s Pizza has been incorporating the city’s beloved sandwich into what is now a bestselling pizza.

In the new book, “The United States of Pizza: America’s Favorite Pizzas, From Thin Crust to Deep Dish, Sourdough to Gluten-Free” (Rizzoli, $30), author Craig Priebe rounds up regional pizzas from across the country, from Swiss-provolone-white cheddar cheese-topped, square-cut slices at Imo’s Pizza in St. Louis to a reuben pizza from Dove Vivi in Portland, Ore. Like the sandwich, this Hot Brown pizza has roast turkey, bacon, tomato and Gruyere cheese, but it also includes alfredo sauce, which could be made a few days ahead of time.

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Hot Brown Pizza is inspired by the famed Hot Brown sandwich in Louisville. Photo by Jeff Kauck.

Hot Brown Pizza

Homemade or store-bought pizza dough
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
3 Tbsp. unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. ground white pepper
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp. hot pepper sauce
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 1/2 cups Gruyere, grated and divided
4 oz. bacon, about 4 strips
12 oz. sliced cooked turkey breast
1 small tomato, chopped
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Let the pizza dough rest on the counter until it comes to room temperature, about 1 hour.

To make the alfredo sauce: Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the flour and stir continuously with a wooden spoon until a smooth paste forms, about 2 minutes. Add the milk, salt, pepper, bay leaf, hot sauce and nutmeg. Cook, stirring often to prevent scalding on the bottom. The sauce will thicken in 4 to 6 minutes. Discard the bay leaf. Add 1 cup of the Gruyere cheese, stir and remove from the heat and let cool for about 10 minutes.

Heat the oven to 400. Place the bacon strips on a small pan and bake for 15 minutes. They will be partially cooked. Drain on paper towels. Let cool, then slice into 1-inch pieces. Move an oven rack to the lowest position.

Increase the oven temperature to 500 degrees and heat for 15 minutes. Shape the dough and place it on a pizza pan or screen. Spread the sauce on the dough with a rubber spatula, leaving a 1-inch border around the edge. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup grated Gruyere. Top with turkey slices, followed by bacon. Bake the pizza for 18 to 20 minutes, until the crust is deep brown and the toppings are bubbling. Check underneath with a metal spatula to ensure the bottom crust is deep brown, too. Let the pizza rest for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with the chopped tomato and parsley, then cut the pizza into 8 wedges and serve. Serves 3 to 4.

— From “The United States of Pizza: America’s Favorite Pizzas, From Thin Crust to Deep Dish, Sourdough to Gluten-Free” by Craig Priebe with Dianne Jacob (Rizzoli, $30)


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