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The Talented Guava

Food24's Chef Caro yodels the praises of this wonderful winter fruit.

by: Caro de Waal: Food24 | 14 May 2009

Each day another 20 or so green orbs plummet to the ground in our backyard with a familiar ‘thump’. Hail the wonderful and proficient winter fruit, as Solly said the other day on 567, ‘the guaaaaava!’ With a shiny pale green skin and luscious pink flesh, this sexy fruit goes all the way.

This delightful and delicious berry has extremely high levels of all the good stuff, and are the fruit of choice this winter to drive away the sniffles and keep a healthy mind and body, and of course our tummies warm and full.

The scoop
Excuse me whilst I rave on but it’s simply amazing, they have a vitamin C level five times that of the orange, which is found in high concentration just underneath the skin. The guava also contains a high level of vitamin A and the pips are a good source of iron and calcium. When it comes to dietary fibre, the guava contains about 9g per cup. That’s more fibre than you’d get in an apple, apricot, banana, and nectarine combined. And getting more fibre in your diet is one of the best ways to lower cholesterol, and the risk of heart disease. They’re thought to fight cancer too.

Also very high in lycopene, which is the red carotenoid found in tomatoes, they boast a 50% higher content which makes them inordinately high in anti-oxidants. Anti-oxidants are your best friends, especially in winter when your immune system is low. They hoover up all the bad stuff that makes its way into your system, so, the more the better!

With an alluring flavour somewhere between a pear and a strawberry, guavas have their very own unique taste, and give us no end of delight with their versatility in our world of food.

Sweet or savoury, lets bake, roast, pureé, grill, braise, boil, bake, stew, scorch and sauté!

You could start the day with this delicious health shake to benefit the whole family and keep those coughs and colds at bay. You could also try this pretty in pink smooth guava jam on your toast for brekkie for a vitamin C boost in the morning.

They’re different and interesting when used in savoury dishes, and really should feature more in our restaurants, I think. Here’s one of my own recipes, spiced guavas with slow cooked lamb . Give it a sizzle and see what you think, and why not try some savoury dishes of your own, we’d be keen to hear all about them – and take pics, we love that. I used the juice from Wilde juices in this recipe, they are fabulous as they have no preservatives (bring it on), and are made by pressing and squeezing fresh fruit. They’ve also got a long shelf life until opened, so you can stock up without worrying that they will go off – rah rah for Wilde, finally a pure product.

For the sweet tooth in us all, try this über- simple pan-fried guavas with vanilla ice cream recipe, and for something comforting this guava crumble . Or try your hand at these scrummy French-style guava tarts .

The giggling gourmet has been busy with this gorgeous baked guava dessert and guava chutney . What a talented mama.

Love and guaaaaaavas!

- None


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