Indian Guava Cheese

Guava cheese

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  • Total: 60 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins
  • Cook: 40 mins
  • Yield: 1 platter (1 serving)

Guava sweets are common in Indian, Southeast Asian, and Hispanic cuisines. Each tradition has many recipes using the fruit to make sweets, but they all coincide in how to make guava paste, as it lasts for many months and it's delicious either on its own or as an ingredient in pies and pastries.

A chewy fudge-like sweet, Indian guava cheese is best made with fresh guavas. Budget-friendly, these fruits are commonly found in Asian and Hispanic markets and are even cheaper when bought in bulk. They are a rich source of vitamin C; eaten raw or cooked, guavas are a great addition to a healthy diet; are thought to be good for upset stomachs and blood pressure ailments; and can even help weight loss as they're low in calories and very filling.

Our sweet recipe is a great way of using a large number of guavas before they go bad. Simply cool the paste completely and store it in waxed paper for up to 6 months.

Ingredients

  • 2.2 lbs guavas (soft)
  • 5 to 6 cups sugar

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. 

  2. Thoroughly wash the guavas and pat dry. Remove the stems and any brown spots. Peel and cut in half.

  3. Use an ice cream scooper or a spoon to remove the pulp and seeds. Place the seed in one bowl and the thicker part of the fruit in another.

  4. Blend at high speed all the seedless fruit pieces and set aside.

  5. Place a sieve on top of a bowl. Place spoonfuls of the seed-containing pulp on top of the sieve and add a few tablespoons of water to help you extract the most pulp and discard the seeds. Rub and press the seeds down using a flat spoon or spatula so as to extract the pulp surrounding the seeds. Repeat the same process until you're done with all the pulp and seeds.

  6. Add the thinner pulp you extracted from the guava seeds to the puree of fruit you had set aside and mix well. Measure how much of this mixture you have, as the amount of sugar you need depends on how much fruit puree you have.

  7. Add one cup less of sugar than the number of cups of guava pulp you obtained. If you have 6 cups of pulp, add 5 cups of sugar to it. Mix well.

  8. Put all the sugar and pulp into a large, flat, heavy-bottomed pan on a medium flame. Because of the amount of sugar and the naturally occurring sugar in the fruit, this mixture burns easily, so keep an eye on it at all times.

  9. Cook, stirring frequently until it thickens enough so it doesn't stick to the sides of the pan. The color of the mixture will go from bright pink to a dark reddish-brown, and it will get difficult to stir as the cooked sugar will thicken the paste.

  10. Grease one cookie sheet with butter or margarine and spoon the guava paste onto it. Spread into a thick layer.

  11. Allow to cool off almost completely and while still warm, cut into diamonds or squares.

  12. When completely cooled, wrap in wax paper and store in an air-tight container.

  13. Enjoy!

Watch Out! Hot Guava!

  • As with any confection making, be mindful that cooking sugar is always dangerous. Guava paste can reach very high temperatures and easily burn your skin when bubbling. Keep kids and pets out of the kitchen, use shoes to avoid slipping when handling hot sugar, and use protective gear like aprons and silicone gloves.

How to Eat Guava Paste

You can simply eat a cube of guava paste on its own, but here are other delicious ideas on how to use it as an ingredient in other recipes:

  • Puff Pastry Guava Empanadas: Cut squares of puff pastry and place a triangle-shaped piece of guava paste in each. Fold the pastry and make a triangle. Brush with egg wash and bake until the pastry is golden brown. Add a piece of cheese inside if you want to make a sweet-savory combination.
  • Guava Cheese Appetizer: Cut same-size small triangles of Manchego cheese and guava paste. Top the cheese with the guava and place a Marcona almond on top of each bite.
  • Guava Cheese Pie: Blind bake a pie shell until golden brown. Pour guava paste in its thick but still malleable form, before it solidifies, in the baked shell and spread out with the help of a spatula. Let the paste cool off. Make Italian meringue to top the pie, grate some lemon zest to decorate the meringue, and brown the meringue in a decorative pattern using a kitchen torch.