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Fresh fillets of haddock are coated with smoky paprika, garlic powder, oregano, and thyme before they get a quick sear to develop a delicious crust. They are then sandwiched between toasted brioche buns smeared with a strong, tangy tartar sauce laced with refreshingly piquant horseradish. If your fish fillets are thicker than 3/4 inch, butterfly them by carefully cutting through the center of the fillet (parallel to the work surface), leaving 1/2 inch of the meat attached at the side so it can be opened like a book.

May 2022


Credit: Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Audrey Davis

Recipe Summary

15 mins


Tartar Sauce


Make the tartar sauce:
  • Whisk together mayonnaise, sour cream, shallot, parsley, horseradish, lemon juice, cornichons, capers, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Make the sandwiches:
  • Stir together paprika, garlic powder, oregano, thyme, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Sprinkle spice mixture evenly over both sides of fish fillets. Set aside.

  • Heat a large cast-iron skillet over high. Spread 1 teaspoon butter over cut side of each bun half. Place buns, buttered side down, in hot skillet; cook until well toasted and browned, about 1 minute. Transfer to a work surface. Do not wipe skillet clean. 

  • Add oil and remaining 2 tablespoons butter to skillet; cook over high until butter is melted. Add fish fillets; cook until blackened on bottoms, about 3 minutes. Flip fillets; cook until blackened on other sides and just cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat, and transfer fish to a plate.

  • Spread 1 tablespoon tartar sauce over toasted side of each bun half. Arrange fish and lettuce evenly on bottom bun halves. Cover with top bun halves, toasted side down. Serve alongside remaining 1/2 cup tartar sauce at the table. 

Suggested Pairing

Lightly spicy Rhône-style white: Tablas Creek Vineyard Côtes de Tablas Blanc