Here's another fairly simple sandwich-as-a-meal idea. It's pretty involved for a sandwich, but is robust enough for dinner (and is easy in comparison to most other evening meals). Forgive the crumbs. Somehow at the time I thought they would make the sandwich in the photo look oh-so-appetizing.
This is another idea Bob gleaned from one of the many restaurants where he has worked. You will need the following ingredients:
Sliced French bread (we usually buy it from Costco, but you could also use Texas Toast or any other thick-sliced, fluffy bread)
Softened butter (we find that magic butter is perfect for this)
A small amount of grated parmesan cheese (we use 1/2 to 3/4 cup to make sandwiches for all of us, but you may require far less)
Deli sliced ham (we buy black forest hams and slice them ourselves, but you can just as easily ask the deli to shave it for you). You'll need about 1/8th of a pound or maybe just a little more per sandwich; I actually weigh it out on our kitchen scale and measure about 2/10ths of a pound per sandwich
Sliced Swiss cheese
Clean, torn lettuce leaves
Homemade thousand island dressing
You'll find that the method for making this sandwich has many similarities to our BFB recipe.
1. Butter one side of each slice of bread. It probably goes without saying, but you'll want two slices per sandwich. Sprinkle a bit of grated parmesan cheese on top of the butter and press it into the butter so it will stick (I use the back side of a small metal spatula to do it). For an example of what this should look like, see here. Set the bread aside for a few minutes.
2. Put the ham into small "stacks" or piles, portioned for each sandwich. Set the stacks aside.
3. Put the bread slices cheese side down on a hot griddle (I usually set it at 350 degrees). Let them cook for 2-3 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the griddle and set aside.
4. Put the ham stacks on the griddle and let them cook until they turn ever so slightly brown. Then flip them over (keeping the stacks intact) and place a slice of Swiss cheese on top. The cheese should more or less cover the ham. Leave on the griddle until the cheese has melted, then carefully remove, keeping the ham and cheese in their "stack" formation.
5. Assemble the sandwiches. The cheesy side of the bread goes to the outside; place the ham on the inside of one slice of bread and the lettuce and tomato on the other side. Drizzle with homemade thousand island dressing (see below).
Don't be intimidated by the homemade dressing. It takes no more than five minutes to make, and includes ingredients that you are almost certain to have in the fridge. We usually put all of the makings on the counter and let everyone make their own. Here's the dressing recipe:
Thousand Island Dressing
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon white vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons sweet pickle relish
1 teaspoon finely minced white onions
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 dash black pepper
Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl. Stir well. Place dressing in a covered container and refrigerate for several hours, stirring occasionally so that the sugar dissolves and the flavors blend.