Everybody loves dessert, right?

Sometimes I feel guilty about what I share with you, rather, what I don’t share. See, I don’t have much of a sweet tooth, which is unusual when you consider desserts are my family’s business. Maybe it’s because I could smell the scent of baked goods wafting through the house almost every day of my life since age 12 or so. Or maybe I just didn’t get that gene, I don’t know. What I do know, is that I don’t share desserts with you guys very often.

I will try to pay more attention to your sweet tooth, starting with this post. It’s cake time. It’s really good cake time. This is again my mom’s basic recipe for vanilla cake, this time, though, I added some guayaba paste (known stateside as guava paste) and a frosting that includes Nutella. What else could you ask for?

Whenever I go back home to Panama I make a grocery store run, picking up all the goodies I cannot find in the US. On this last trip, I found some guayaba preserve that came in a pouch. I was transfixed by the sight of the magical, colorful pouch. Pourable guayaba preserve? Oh my.

If you have purchased this delicious paste in the US, you’ve likely found it in a round tub or a long brick. The consistency of it would’ve been pretty thick, sticky¬†and solid. Nothing wrong with that one, it is the one I’ve purchased most of my life. But being able to pour it out… Think of how you felt the first time you saw mayo in those new squeeze bottles. Heaaaavennnn.

OK, back to the guayaba business. If you are dealing with the tub or brick of guayaba paste, all you’ll need to do for this recipe, is dissolve the paste so it is liquid. I used some of the paste so I could give you some guidance. For about 1-1/2 cps of cubed guava paste, add 1/4 cp of pineapple juice, melt it over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Let it cool.

Pastel de Guayaba con Glaseado de Nutella

1-1/2 cps butter (3 sticks), softened
1-1/2 cps sugar
4 eggs, room temperature
1 cp pineapple juice
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/2 tsp nutmeg
3 cps flour
3 tsps baking powder
1 cp guayaba paste, melted

Preheat oven to 350¬į.¬†Prepare a 9×13 baking pan: use the butter wrappers to grease the cake pan, then add a bit of¬†flour to coat. Set aside.¬†Combine the milk, vanilla and almond extracts. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and nutmeg. Set aside.

Combine the butter and sugar in a mixer bowl and beat until the sugar grains are dissolved and the mixture is smooth and light in color. If the butter is at room temperature, this will take about 10 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, making sure to beat each one in completely.

Add 1/3 of the flour and mix until incorporated, then alternate with 1/2 of the juice. Then another 1/3 of the flour, followed by the rest of the juice and end with flour. Take care not to overbeat, just mix long enough to get all the flour evenly incorporated.

Spread half of the batter on the bottom of the baking pan. Then drizzle half of the the guayaba and top with the rest of the batter. Drizzle the rest of the guayaba paste over the top, going in the opposite direction you did the first time.

Use a knife or spatula¬†to swirl the guayaba into the batter. Try not to push all the way to the bottom of the pan, otherwise you’ll have problems unmolding it. Pop it in the oven and bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when you pierce the center of the cake.

Allow it to cool for a few minutes, while you make the frosting. See recipe below. Unmold the cake onto a platter and spread on the frosting while it is still warm.

Nutella Buttercream Frosting

1/4 cp butter, softened
1-1/2 cps powdered sugar
3 tbsp cocoa powder
1/3 cp heavy cream
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/2 tub Nutella, approx 1-1/2 cps

 In a large bowl, cream the butter, sugar, cocoa and extracts until smooth. Add the Nutella and mix until smooth and completely incorporated.

Add enough cream to thin out the frosting, it should be about the consistency of yogurt or sour cream. Not runny, just thin enough to smooth it easily over the cake. 

You’ll need a glass of milk to go with this one.

Cookingly yours,