Amidst the barrels of apples, persimmons, and squash at last Sunday's Hollywood farmers market, a new fruit was up for grabs. Tucked between oranges and pomegranates on Sycamore Hill Ranch's table, green pineapple guavas caught the eye of more than a few shoppers who wondered just what the fruit was. Farmer Jeanne Stehly's response? "It's unlike any other fruit. Here, take one home and try it," she answered as she handed inquisitive market-goers a sample.
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Pineapple guava, or feijoa, are just coming into season and should be available through the end of December and possibly into next year. As the season progresses, the fruit will become sweeter, but intrigued shoppers can try the sweetly-tart, floral fruit now. Lesser known, pineapple guava are a thick-skinned, football-shaped fruit that can be eaten like a kiwi. Cut the fruit in half and scoop the insides out with a spoon. Inside, the pineapple guavas hold a clear, pulpy center surrounded by a pale yellow, thicker, gritty fruit, which is similar in texture to a firm pear. The thick skin can be eaten, although it's very sour.
While most people enjoy the fruit raw, you can cook with pineapple guavas, making jams, purees, and sauces. Try adding the fruit to smoothies or yogurt for a floral, exotic flavor. In Stehly's opinion, however, " the fruit tastes awesome, I don't like to alter it in anyway." She does suggest using the blossoms in salads.