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Pesto, Mozzarella Panini with Peruvian Spice

Updated: Jan 10, 2022

I was craving a pesto panini sandwich for lunch today, but also wanted to bring the heat in the cold, snowy January weather, so I sprinkled a dash of chilli pepper, paprika, cumin and lime juice - all flavors present in Peruvian cuisine - just before serving. The effect was to bring an additional umami zing to a dish that was already bursting with flavor. Here's how I made it:

To make:

Grill two slices of your preferred bread on one side in a pan lightly seasoned with olive oil, then flip and spread pesto, mozzarella and optional sundried tomato slivers on the grilled side. (You can also soften a few cherry tomatoes in the same pan to top the mozzarella with instead, if you prefer). Sprinkle chilli pepper, paprika, cumin, a little coarse salt and lime juice on one piece of bread and continue grilling until the bottom of both pieces are nicely toasted. Turn off heat, place the bread with the pesto on top of the slice with the mozzarella and tomato, and allow residual heat in pan to continue melting mozzarella before serving.

Happy New Year.

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