Guayabate (Guava Paste)

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Adapted from low-cholesterol.food.com

INGREDIENTS
Guavas, peeled, approximately ¾ to 1¼ pounds (10–18 guavas)
Water, approximately 1 cup per pound of guavas
Sugar, approximately 2 cups (more or less)

PREPARATION

  • Cut guavas in half and scoop out seeds. Soak seeds in half of the water.
  • Peel guava halves, cut into chunks, and place in a saucepan with the remaining water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook until guava is very soft—stirring often to prevent burning and sticking—then remove from heat (approximately 30 minutes).
  • Strain the water from the seeds (it will be slightly gelatinous), and stir in with the cooked guavas. Discard seeds.
  • Grind the guava through a food mill and measure the pulp. Add an equal amount of sugar, mix, and place in a large heavy saucepan over low heat.
  • Cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until mixture is thick and a little jelly tested on an ice cube can be lifted off in one piece (around 20 minutes).
  • Remove from heat and beat with a wooden spoon for 10 minutes or until the mixture forms a heavy paste.
  • Turn out into a loaf pan or small, square casserole pan lined with wax paper, and set in a cool place for 24 hours.
  • To store, turn the paste out of the pan and wrap it securely in foil. Keep cool.

Yields approximately 1 to 1½ cups of guava paste. Prep time, 10 minutes; cook time, approximately 1 hour. While time-intensive, the resulting treat is worth the effort!

Cook’s note: Guayabate is a popular condiment in Cuba and Central and South America. It’s used in a wide variety of desserts, notably pastelitos de guayaba (Cuban guava pastry), and also cakes or pie.

 

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