A fruit with a delicate yet distinctive flavour, the guava grows in most tropical and sub-tropical regions. There are two important species – the common guava and the strawberry or cattley guava. The fruits of the former are round or pear- shaped and the flesh ranges from white to salmon pink, with a high proportion of small hard seeds.

Guavas have a high Vitamin C content and are usually eaten fresh from the tree. In some countries, notably South Africa, they are sliced, sprinkled lightly with sugar, covered with a plate, and allowed to stand overnight. The syrup that forms, with the fruit, makes a delicious breakfast appetizer.

Guavas sold in the streets of Bombay are usually sprinkled with salt and chilli powder.

The fruit is well-suited to the making of jams and preserves and the well-known guava jelly, which is delicious both as a spread for bread and toast and with cold roast meats.