Pesto paneer sandwich

When I hear some people complain that they’re too overwhelmed, that they’re overworked and super busy, I feel like Manick Basha caught amongst “Naanum rowdy thaan” rowdies. The real dons, the real rowdies, the worker bees go about their business like the professionals that they are. They don’t have the time nor the need to tell everyone how busy and important they are. I learnt though that this is not as obvious to the world. The world believes the “Naai Sekhars” more than “Manick Basha” or “Velu Naicker”. Strange world.

Pesto paneer sandwich

When men tell me they’re too busy, I feel especially amused. Single men, you don’t even qualify.

Really? You are busy whatsapping in the toilet for an hour, reading the paper, taking your own bath, dressing up yourself, eating, putting on shoes on your own but having somebody bring you your socks and going to work. By that standard, my 6 year old is overwhelmed and super busy too.

What do ya call the mommies and wives who cooked two meals, packed several lunches, got the kids ready for school, made the morning coffees and teas, set up the washing machine, straightened up the house, did the morning poojai, bathed & dressed (nobody brought her socks or panties) and drove to work, worked all day, answered calls in between to tell folks where the cello tape is, where the cough syrup is, came back home, straightened up the home, cooked dinner, lost her temper during homework time and made up during bed time?

I call them the real rowdies. The professionals. No snivelling, no complaining, no publicity, no projection. We simply get the job done.

Next time some “Naai Sekhar” complains to you about how busy he is, remember who you are. Basha doesn’t go about telling people he is Basha, until it is time.

Pesto Paneer sandwich

I have an incredibly easy but flavour bursting pesto paneer sandwich recipe for all you real rowdies out there. Read on for the recipe.

Pesto paneer sandwich


The key to a good pesto is good olive oil and a generous amount of it. I love a good pesto (check out the pesto recipe here). I love it so much, I’d willingly slather it on toast, stir into stir fries and toss my pasta in it. I suddenly realized last week that I hadn’t made pesto in a long long time. I was in luck, I had some pudina (mint) leftover too. I quickly whipped up this mint-almond pesto. Making your own pesto is the easiest thing you could imagine. Choose your favourite green herb – basil, coriander or mint or a combination of them and add the nuts of your choice – walnuts or almonds or pine nuts or pistachios, a clove of garlic and blitz. Blend in parmesan cheese and salt while drizzling in olive oil. Taste and adjust the seasoning. That is all there is to a pesto. It’s a lot easier than the coconut chutney you make so often. You can store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. When you’re craving that fresh, herb-kissed pesto, you know where to look. I did the same. I used half the pesto for these pesto paneer sandwiches and refrigerated the rest. I stirred the pesto into a stir-fry the next week. I love these pesto paneer sandwiches for how unbelievably simple they are, for how fresh and yummy they are. Try today!

Pesto paneer sandwich

Pesto paneer sandwich

Pesto paneer sandwich

Jayanthi Padmanabhan
This pesto paneer sandwich is full of fresh, herby flavour, yummy and incredibly easy!
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Servings 4


  • Whole wheat bread slices – 8
  • Paneer – 200 gm sliced into rectangular pieces
  • Cheese slices - 4
  • Pesto – 6 tbsp
  • Butter – 3 tbsp softened
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper – 1 tsp


  • 1. Spread pesto on the inside slices of all the bread slices.
  • 2. Place paneer slices to cover four of the bread slices.
  • 3. Place a cheese slice on top of the paneer on each of the four bread slices.
  • 4. Cover with the remaining 4 bread slices, pesto side down to make 4 sandwiches. Spread butter on the outside slices of the sandwiches.
  • 5. Heat a tawa until hot. When hot, reduce heat to minimum and place as many sandwiches as the tawa will hold. Wait for 1-2 minutes or until the underside is golden. Gently flip over and cook the other side until golden. Remove on to a plate. Toast other sandwiches the same way. Let stand for a minute. Slice with a sharp knife diagonally. Serve hot. Enjoy!
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