There is this little Cuban Bakery called Azucar located in Ocean Beach, CA where I enjoyed my first guava and cream cheese pastry. It was amazing. Since that day, it is always a special treat when I have time to make a stop in there.
Typically served as a snack, these pastries, or Pasteles De Guayaba Y Queso, are stuffed with sweet guava paste and cream cheese and baked in puff pastry, resulting in a creamy, gooey, flaky, deliciously sweet pastry. I can’t tell you how much I love these things. Well yes I can, I LOVE these things!
I first got the idea to make my own guava and cream cheese pastry when I received some guava paste as a gift for Christmas. Who gets guava paste for Christmas you ask? Apparently I do. Not having a lot of experience cooking with this stuff, I quickly remembered these great pastries I periodically get at Azucar. If you had asked me a few years ago whether I could make these at home, I would have answered a definite no. But alas, how wrong I was. There are only a few ingredients in this recipe. These pastries are a whole lot easier to make than they look! Definitely easier than these Lemon Meringue Tarts. And if I can make those, I can certainly make a little guava and cream cheese pastry.
The pastries are best served straight out of the oven (well let them cool a little first), however, they can also be re-heated if desired. I don’t recommend keeping them for more than a day, as they stale quickly and are not as tasty. We found this out the hard way and had to throw a few away. Shame on us!!
Let’s get started, I want to show you how easy this recipe is. You’re going to love it!
See how few ingredients there are? Start by thawing the puff pastry according to the directions on the package. I find that it tends to thaw more quickly than the package indicates (15 minutes). Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Lay one sheet of puff pastry on the parchment paper and add about 1 tablespoon of guava paste 3 across and 3 down, evenly spaced. Feel free to add more or less guava paste to your liking.
Add enough cream cheese to almost cover the guava paste. I use about 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons. Again, adjust the amount to your liking. Me? I love plenty of filling.
Beat the egg to make an egg wash. Brush the egg wash on the spaces in between the guava paste. Lay the second sheet of puff pastry on top and seal at edges and in between the guava and cream cheese pieces. Brush the top layer of puff pastry with the egg wash.
Sprinkle the top with the granulated sugar. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until top is golden brown. Bake on a lower oven rack to prevent the sugar from burning. Let cool for 15 minutes and cut into individual pastries. I find it easiest to use a pizza cutter for this to get a nice clean cut.
This guava and cream cheese pastry is great served any time of the day. Personally, I love to have them for breakfast, but have also been known to have them as an after dinner or even mid-afternoon snack. Great served with a good cup of strong coffee!
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