What is a guava?
No other fruit says Cuba like guava (guayaba). I had never even heard of guava until I met my Cuban family and ate my first Cuban guava pastry or pastelitos de guayaba. Instant love at first bite!
If you don’t know what a guava is either then let me explain. Guavas are small tropical fruits that are pear-shaped, the skin is green and when ripe the flesh is pink with small seeds. They are the sweetest when they turn pink.
Are guavas good for you?
Guavas are full of antioxidants and contain more vitamins than citrus fruits such as oranges and lemons. These vitamins are vitamin C, vitaminB1, B2, B3, B6 pantothenic acid, calcium, folates, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, sodium, iron, copper, and selenium.
People who consume guavas daily can reduce cholesterol by 10%, triglycerides by 8%, and good HDL cholesterol by 8%.
Guava is also rich in pectin which makes it beneficial to the digestive system to help cleanse the bowels and relieve constipation. To learn about other health benefits look here.
With the combination of all of these health benefits and the sweet taste there is no reason not to love guava pastries (pastelitos de guayaba). We can even eat them every day guilt free, just saying!
We are going to be using guava paste, my personal favorite is Conchita brand.
Just like when we made Cuban picadillo pastries, (pastelitos de carne) we are going to use frozen puff pastry sheets to keep it really easy. Today we are going to be cutting them into 3″x3″ squares. However, when making pastries for a party feel free to cut them smaller into 2″x3″ rectangles.
Below is a Pinterest friendly image…
Cuban Guava Pastries (Pastelitos de Guayaba)
Remove pastry sheets from freezer and let thaw according to instructions on the box. I like to usually let the pastry sheets thaw for about a half an hour. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. While pastry sheets are thawing cut guava paste into 1/4" strips. In 2 small bowls prepare egg wash and corn syrup mixture. Remove pastry sheets from box and lay out on parchment paper. If needed use a rolling pin to even out sides. Cut 3x3 inch squares. Using a pastry brush, brush all sides of bottom squares with beaten egg. Place cut guava paste strips on each bottom square.
Cover with top square. Using your fingers seal edges of pastry dough. Brush top layer with egg wash. Using a small knife make a one inch slit in each square. Transfer parchment paper to cookie sheet or shallow baking tray. Cook for 25 minutes then brush with corn syrup mixture and cook for another 5 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.