Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Taste of Aloha Part Six: Guava Jelly for da belly

I encountered an amazing amount of luck when I stumbled upon a
vendor at the Sunday Claremont Farmer's Market...

We hit it up at the tail end when vendors where packing up and stuff
was getting marked down left and right. I grabbed some heirloom
tomatoes, onions, green beans, and squash-- Monkey-man got his rye

On our way out I noticed someone had a bucket of small greenish-
yellow fruits. As I got closer, the smell was unmistakable. Certain
parts of the year these trees with be laden with fruit, most of it
falling to the ground and rotting.

Guava has a smell that I cannot compare to anything else. Slightly
citrus-y, alcoholic, shampoo, tropical... Strawberry guava is an
invasive species, but near to impossible to control. We had a few
in our yard that kept coming back no matter what you did.

They would grow so incredibly high that it was dangerous if left alone.
After cutting some down in our yard, we'd pour vinegar onto the
stumps and still they'd come back.

Guava is extremely pungent. I bought a pound and while we only
had them out for a day, you could smell them everywhere in the house.
The skin is edible, similar to that of a fresh fig. The seeds are also
edible, but kind of crunchy so some people will spit them out.

They are delicious blended up into smoothies and juices, but just
be sure to strain them before drinking or you'll get seeds. The taste,
like the smell, is unlike anything else. I think of it as close to the
strawberry candy flavour with a tropical citrus twist.

Pretty much every where you go to shop in Hawaii you will find
some type of Guava or strawberry Guava jelly or butter.
Here I make both...

Guava Jelly for yo' belly

1 lb of guavas- I used a mixture of pink and white
3/4 cup raw sugar

Cut of the ends of the guava and quarter. Pulse through a processor
until the skins are blended. Push the pulp through a strainer with a
spoon or squeeze through a cheesecloth to remove the seeds. You will
get something that looks like melted ice cream.

Pour into a medium sauce pan and add the sugar. Heat over
medium-high, stirring constantly. Cook for about 15-minutes to cook
off some of the liquid and thicken the sugar.

Once it looks to be about the consistency of preserves or a thick
sauce, remove from the heat and either can and process or allow to

This makes enough for a 1 pint jar

First we allowed it to cool and ate it over toast and tofutti better-

But for breakfast I made it into a Guava Butter spread. I only made
enough for breakfast because its not the ideal health food if you
know what I mean.

It is basically 2 parts guava jelly and 1 part earthbalance. Melt
the earthbalance and stir in the jelly. Pour into a small dish and
chill or freeze until it re-solidifies.

I would try your local farmers market and ask around for where to
possibly find some guava. Better yet, if you have a mexican market
near by, they are almost bound to have guava!

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