BY: DR. KAVIRAJ KHIALANI- CELEBRITY MASTER CHEF
Guava has been called as the “Apple of the Tropics “and find its roots back in south America, Mexico, Spain and from here it has found its way to various parts of the world. It is also known to us as Peru or Amrood in local terms. Guava grown on small trees with tortuous branches and a smooth trunk.
The fruit is like a berry with a fleshy yellow or pink smooth color shade and is juicy to relish and enjoy in various forms and is highly appreciated for its delectable taste & aroma. Guava has been an important part of our food processing industry as well and it has been actively used in manufacturing of jams, jellies, candies, juices, ready to use beverages, concentrated syrups, marmalades and more.
Guava also finds itself in dehydrated and powdered form as well. Its uses in the manufacturing industry has been adding into the list of convenience foods and ready to use options for instance we also have varieties of wine being made with guava juice and guava pulp too.
Let us look at a few Health Benefits and Goodness of Guava:
- Guava is rich in calcium, potassium, iron, fiber and minerals.
- Guava is a good source of Vitamin-A, Vitamin- B, Vitamin- C along with folic acid as well.
- Guava is a strong immunity boosting ingredient which makes it useful for us to have it on our plates and in our diets specially in these pandemic times.
- Guava has good digestive properties and helps control blood pressure as well.
- Guava is good for eyesight and also has anti- aging properties.
- Guava is known to be heart healthy and also good for the brain and memory as well.
- Guava also assists in weight management and those looking for low cal options can adapt to it in their diets.
- Guava is known to be high in anti- oxidants which are very important for wear and tear in our body.
- Guava is also known to be good for our skin and helps treat common cold and cough too.
- Guava has been known to assist managing thyroid gland as well by controlling the hormone production.
Here are a few Culinary Uses of the Guava:
- Guava in its ripe form freshly cut and a light sprinkling of rock salt and a little chili powder and splash of lime is just awesome to enjoy besides we can also add it to our Chaats Amrood ki chaat and adding it to fruit salads is simply cool.
- Guava juice is an important element at bar counters be it cocktails or mocktails, health shakes, smoothies or energy drinks guava juice or pulp is one ingredient we hardly miss the most common drink being the guava mary or the guava chili cooler.
- Guava juice is also a good option to use in marination, dressings, sauces and glazes to go with international cuisines and its sharp and pungency levels add a new dimension to the dish or recipes they are added to.
- Guava pectin as it is known is also important in the manufacture of ice-creams, cake doughs, juice powders, ready to drink beverages and gelatin.
- Guava is a good choice to add into salads for instance with watermelon, fresh assorted lettuce and some feta cheese is a truly a treat for the eyes and appetite. Besides guava also goes well in raita, as Amrood ki chutney, guava halwa, guava cheesecake, guava cheese.
- Guava can be added with mint and other citrus elements into detox water as well and can be enjoyed all day long. Try adding guava to your favorite dips and guava energy bars are also a favorite of many on a healthy diet. Guava mojito is a refreshing summer cooler idea!
- Guava pilaf rice, Tadkewala Amrood ke Chawal, guava kheer, guava in a phirni format, guava rice pudding with cinnamon, guava rabdi, guava thandai, not to forget peru ka achaar and Amrood ki subzi or curry.
Here are a few simple- easy & healthy recipes with Guava:
Recipe-1] GUAVA GUPSHUP COOLER
- Guava juice-250 ml
- Watermelon juice- 400 ml
- Lime juice- 2 tsp
- Honey- 1 tsp
- Mint leaves- 10-12 no
- Lime slices- 4-5 no
- Ice cubes- as needed
Tall glasses to serve the cooler.
- Ginger juice- 2 tsp
- Rock salt-1/4 tsp + red chili powder-1/4 tsp mixed.
- Prepare all the ingredients for the summer cooler recipe.
- Chill the glasses before starting with the drink.
- Place a few ice cubes at the base of the glass with a few lime slices and mint leaves, sprinkle a little salt and chili mix.
- Pour in the guava juice and watermelon juice, add lime and ginger, honey, give it a nice stir and serve it immediately.
Recipe-2] FRUITY GUAVA MAC SALAD
For the base of the salad:
- Assorted greens or lettuce leaves-1 cup
For the body of the salad:
- Guava- 1 peeled and cut into cubes.
- Kiwi fruit- 1 peeled and cut into cubes
- Boiled macaroni pasta- 1 cup
- Cucumber- 1 small cubed
- Boiled chana/ chauli- ½ cup
- For the dressing of the salad:
- Mayonnaise or hung curd can be used- ½ to ¾ cup well beaten.
- Mint leaves- 10-12 no
- Rock salt/ pink salt and crushed black pepper to taste
- Mustard paste- ½ tsp
- Chaat masala- ¼ tsp
- Roasted crushed jeera- ¼ tsp
For the garnish of the salad: Assorted nuts, assorted seeds like flax seeds/ melon seeds, micro-greens/olives etc can be added.
- Assemble all the ingredients for the healthy toss salad.
- Use variety of vegetables like broccoli, carrots, beans, mushrooms etc as well and for non-veg boiled chicken cubes, sliced chicken sausages, boiled cubes of eggs etc.
- In a mixing bowl combine together the ingredients for the dressing and give them a nice mix.
- Arrange the base on the serving plate and toss the body and dressing together and serve the salad with appropriate garnishes.
Recipe-3] PERU KA CHATPATA CHAAT
For the body of the chaat:
- Guava/peru- 2 no cut into cubes.
- Green apple/ red apple- 1 no cubes
- Pears- 1 no cubed
- Cucumber- 1 no cubed
- Pomegranate seeds- ½ cup
- Dates- 2-3 chopped
For the chaat dressing:
- Imli saunth ki chutney/ tamarind chutney- 3-4 tbsp.
- Green coriander mint chutney- 2 tsp
- Chaat masala- ½ tsp
- Lime juice- 2 tsp
- Mint and coriander leaves- 2 tbsp.
- Red chili powder & crushed roasted jeera- ½ tsp mix
To garnish: sev/ crushed papdis/assorted micro-greens/ roasted sliced nuts and seeds of your choice.
- Assemble all the ingredients for the chaat and keep them chilled until being used.
- In a mixing bowl combine together the dressing ingredients for the chaat.
- Add in the body of the chaat to the dressing and give it a nice toss.
- Assemble chaat onto a serving platter or in individual serving bowls.
Recipe-4] AMROOD KA ACHAR
- Guava- 3-4 no cut into cubes.
- Sesame oil- ½ to ¾ cup
- Salt- 1 to one and a half tsp.
- Mustard seeds- 1 tsp
- Jeera seeds- 1 tsp
- Turmeric powder- ½ tsp
- Red chili powder- 1 tsp
- Sugar- 1 tsp
- Hing- ¼ tsp
- Saunf- 1 tsp
- Methi dana- ½ tsp
- Assemble all the ingredients for the Amrood ka achar.
- Dry roast all the spices as listed above for a couple of minutes, cool down and then grind to a powder.
- Heat oil and add in the cubes of Amrood and cook on a medium flame for 6- 8 mins, add in the salt and powdered spices and the achar spice blend as well.
- Mix it all up well in the pan and allow to cook for another 3-4 mins on low flame, remove cool and store in air-tight jars in the fridge and use.
Recipe- 5] GUAVA CHICKPEA GOBBLE BOWL
- Guava- 1 no ripe cut into small pieces
- Boiled chickpeas-1/2 cup
- Garlic- 1 tsp chop
- Basil leaves- 10-12 no
- Coriander leaves- ¼ cup
- Green chilies- 1 tsp
- Assorted nuts- 2 tbsp. – use almonds/cashews/walnut.
- Salt to taste
- Oil- 2-3 tbsp.
- Chilled water- 2-3 tbsp.
- Chat masala- ½ tsp
- Crushed black pepper- ¼ tsp
- Flax seed powder/ roasted white sesame seeds- 1 tsp
- Lime juice- 2 tsp
- Prepare all the ingredients for the yummy dip.
- Using a food processing jar combine all the ingredients into it and give it a nice churn.
- Add chilled water as needed to assist in blending to a coarsely smooth paste and remove into a serving dip bowl.
- Drizzle a little olive oil on top, garnish with toasted nuts and seeds and serve with nachos, vegetable sticks or alongside a nice hot starter or savory crackers.