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Hispanic Heritage Month Recipes

Happy Hispanic Heritage Month! Each year, from September 15 to October 15 Americans celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month by sharing the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, Central and South America. 2021 was especially significant because it was the 200th anniversary of Costa Rican Independence from Spain. Here are a few traditional & unique Latin American recipes you may want to add to your menu: 

Ricotta and Guava Pastries (Pasteles de Queso y Guayaba)

When I was a kid, one special kind of treat that my mom would make was Sweet Pasteles filled with Vanilla Ricotta.  She got the recipe years ago from a Colombian friend of hers. I remember her making them for me and serving it with a cup of Hot Chocolate. 
I know the Ricotta and Vanilla may sound like a strange combination but it reminds me of Thai fried ice cream... The inside has a sweet vanilla ice cream like taste with a crispy, crunchy shell. 
My favorite ones have Guava in them. I know it can be something of an acquired taste but that tart sweetness with a nice Cafécito....Mmm so good!
The nice thing about this snack is that you can whip it up in a pinch, and stuff it with what you have.
This is the perfect "Hostess in a pinch" kind of recipe. These can be whipped up in 15-20 minutes. 

Don't have time to make dough?.... Use a Pillsbury biscuit tube instead! 
Don't have Ricotta or Guava Paste? Use Mozzarella with Brown Sugar and bake it instead.
The possibilities are endless!
Here is my version of my mother's friend's recipe for these Tasty Pastries:

Ricotta and Guava Pastries (Pasteles de Queso y Guayaba)

Makes 8-10 Pastries

For the Dough:

1/2 cup Unbleached Flour

1/4 tsp Salt

1 1/2 TBLSP Olive Oil

1/4 cup Water plus 2 TBLSP


1. Mix the flour, salt, water, oil and salt together to make a soft dough.
2. Knead the dough for a few minutes until it's smooth and pliable.
3. Set the dough aside and cover it with damp cloth. Let the dough sit for at least 15 minutes.

For the Ricotta Filling:

1/2 cup Ricotta Cheese
2 TBLSP Sugar

1 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract

1 tsp Heavy Cream*

*Vegan- Tofutti Ricotta, Coconut Cream


1.  Mix the Ricotta with the Sugar, Vanilla, and Cream.

For Guava Filling:
Add 2 oz of mashed Guava paste to 1/4 cup of the Ricotta Filling.

For Pastries:


1. Roll out the dough on a floured area with a floured rolling pin; to about an 1/8 th of an inch thick.

2. Use a 2" wide biscuit/ cookie cutter to cut out circles in the dough.

3. Add 1 tsp of the filling to the center of the dough circle.

4. Wet the edges of the dough circle with water and fold it over into a half moon shape.

5. Use a clean fork to pinch the ends closed. Continue filling the rest of the pastries.

6. Heat about 1" of vegetable oil in a frying pan on medium heat.
7. Place the pastries in the frying pan a few at a time.

8. After about a minute turn them slowly. 
9. Fry until the pastries are a very light golden-brown on both sides.

10. Drain the pastries on some paper towels.

Serve hot as a snack or as a dessert. Serve with Cafécito or Spanish Hot Chocolate!


Tell me what variation/ combination would you try?


  1. Did you know there is a (North) Indian recipe similar to this? It is prepared as a delicacy during the festival of colors - Holi and it is called "Gujhiya" in Hindi :)

    1. Hi Parul! Thanks for stopping by. Wow, I didn't know that! It proves to be a small world everyday! :)

  2. I have been to a little shop that makes these fresh daily, and they are so so good. And I actually think it is an Indian shop if I remember correctly. Will have to check it out and get back to you.

    1. Wow, like I said it's a small world! Hope you give the recipe a try, I'd love to hear a review! :)


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