Wanting to spend as much time on the beach as possible during our Sanibel Island vacation in June, our family of three headed to the nearby Sanibel Fish House to grab a to-go lunch. I wasn’t looking for anything more than a po’ boy or a blackened mahi-mahi sandwich; instead, listed under the sandwich section was something unexpected: “Crunchy Grouper Reuben: A Fish House favorite; served with Thousand Island dressing, coleslaw and Swiss cheese on rye bread.” Surprised, we ordered it. As we passed the sandwich back and forth, we agreed that it was truly delicious!
- Russian Dressing
- ¼ cup light mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 teaspoons sweet relish
- 1 teaspoon white horseradish
- 1 tablespoon diced shallots
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- About 4 tablespoons softened butter, divided
- 4 slices seeded rye bread
- 2 5-ounce filets white fish (grouper, corvina, haddock, snapper or similar)
- 2/3 cup coleslaw
- 2/3 cup shredded Swiss cheese
- For the dressing, in a medium bowl, mix the mayonnaise, ketchup and Worcestershire until well combined. Add the remaining dressing ingredients, stir and set aside. You may have leftover dressing.
- Add the olive oil to a heavy pan, and heat on medium. Generously salt and pepper the fish and add to the pan when hot. Cook until brown on both sides, about 3 minutes per side (depending on thickness).
- While the fish cooks, butter both sides of the rye bread (using about 3 tablespoons butter in total). In a nonstick pan, cook (toast) each side of the bread until golden brown. Remove the bread from the pan. (If fish is done, remove from heat and cover lightly with foil.)
- To assemble sandwich, spread Russian dressing on inside of each piece of bread. Evenly divide the cheese and put on top of the dressing. Next, divide the coleslaw and spread on top of one side of the sandwich (1/3 cup for each sandwich). Then divide the fish and add the fish pieces on top of the slaw side of the sandwich. Add more coleslaw on top of the fish (and more cheese, if you want), then close the sandwich by quickly flipping over the other piece of bread with dressing and cheese on top.
- Reheat the nonstick pan with about 1 tablespoon butter. Carefully add each sandwich and flatten with a spatula while cooking for about another minute on each side while the cheese melts. Remove from pan, cut and serve.