How to make nutritious guava cheese fruit toffee for a kids birthday party
Guava toffee makes a great substitute for candy for kids. If you are giving your child healthy food, this is a simple recipe to add to your recipe book.
Guavas: 3 (Boiled and strained to remove seeds)
Raw sugar or jaggery: same amount as guava pulp after boiling and straining
Lemon juice: 1 tsp
Butter: 1 tbs
Simmer all the ingredients in a pan, stirring occassionally to keep from burning. When it starts leaving the sides, drop a pinch of this mixture into a glass of cold water, if it sets immediately, switch off the heat. Butter a tray lightly and spread the guava cheese mixture on it. Allow to cool. Cut and store for a week. Or, simple wrap it in butter paper for distributing the sweet for your kid’s birthday in school. For a birthday party, you have the flexibility of setting the guava cheese in silicone moulds of interesting shapes or using a cookie cutter. Serve in a colourful caper.
This is also a great way to preserve the goodness of guavas offseason too. Research says it can be kept well, airtight for 6 months.
You could experiment by adding different fresh fruit pulp such as figs, papaya, strawberry or bel. Fruit toffee is great to make and pack for travel too, much like granola bars. I wonder why sweet shops are not making this lovely dessert dish! The halwais in North India are certainly not making it. Though I remember the lovely Aam ki mithai at Raja Bazar, Lucknow, and the wonderful lauki gulab ki mithai at Chitrakoot.
Guava cheese is a traditional Anglo-Indian dessert. In Goa, it is a Christmas treat like it is in the Carribean Islands too. Guava is said to have originated in Tropical America, so this doesn’t come as a surprise.
Though Ayurveda maintains that cooking reduces the nutrients in fruit, nonetheless it is much healthier than refined sugar candy flavoured with chemical additives that we have been buying for our kids, and unknowingly doing them disservice.
Though I learnt this recipe when I was just 13 years old, privileged enough to do a certifcate course in Food processing at the Department of Horticlture, Lucknow, I started making this on my own much later. Back then, I didn’t need to make it myself as the kitchen was already stocked with this yummy sweet.