Every year when I would visit my cousins in Los Angeles, Porto's Cuban Bakery was my Disney Land!
You walk into the enormous bakery and are immediately welcomed by a plethora of baked goods like pastries, cookies, croquets, cakes, and more.
This is where I first tried guava pastelito, which is a combination of puff pastry with a sweet paste made from the pulp of the guava fruit and cream cheese.
Pastelitos in Spanish translates into "little pastries." They're a treat that originated in Cuba and have since made their way to major cities like Miami and Los Angeles.
They are sweet Cuban baked goods that blend European techniques with tropical Cuban flavors.
These treats are the perfect balance of sweet, savory, flaky, melt in your mouth goodness!
And when I went vegan, I had a slight panic for a moment! I won't be able to enjoy Cuban pastelitos anymore!
BUT I quickly decided that if I'm trying to make an effort to be plant-based, I refuse to give up some of my old favorite baking treats.
I soon realized that vegan baking substitutes are totally a thing and doable! No need to give up your favorite cookies, cakes, or pastelitos!
Vegan Cuban Pastelitos Recipe
- 2 packages of vegan puff pastry (you can find at most grocery stores) or here https://amzn.to/2VMtJzG
- 1 package vegan cream cheese https://amzn.to/3ourtJI
- 1 package guava paste https://amzn.to/37FD95J
- 2 Tbs sugar mixed with 1 TBS corn starch
2 TBS plant milk with 1 teaspoon agave or maple syrup
Mix 2 Tbs boiling hot water with 1 Tbs sugar and mix. You can do this in a saucepan or microwave together…basically, you just want to create a simple syrup.
First, lightly roll out two sheets of vegan puff pastry horizontally and vertically. Then cut into 8 even rectangles.
Mix vegan cream cheese with sugar and cornstarch mix. The cornstarch substitutes the egg that helps stabilize the cream cheese. Mix until creamy and yummy.
Spread evenly on each rectangle sheet.
Then add about 3 slices of guava paste to each rectangle.
Top with another layer of puff pastry and seal the edges with a bit of water on your fingers.
Lightly score the tops of the pastries with a knife to create air pockets to help the pastry rise.
Brush the tops with any vegan milk mixed with agave or maple syrup. This gives the pastry a golden brown color.
Bake at 400 for about 15 min or until lightly golden.
Lightly glaze the tops with a syrup made with hot water and sugar mixture. This gives it some extra shine.
And now you're ready to enjoy it along with a little cafecito!