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Dayna Hoskin really knows how to bake up a storm.
~Best Recipes

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Strawberry and Pear Shortcake

Japan is home to many an exotic fruit.... however while I was there in 2016, I was REALLY craving Pears and couldn't find any ANYWHERE!

Then... just as all hope seemed lost, this magnificent little shortcake appeared in the window of a cute little bakery in Kyoto. The heavens parted, angels sang and a halo of light surrounded it. My eyes lit up like a kid a candy store or a baker in a bakery. It was the best thing I've ever tasted! Or maybe I just wanted Pears so badly that no matter what it tasted like I would have thought it was the best thing ever... well, we're about to find out!

Here is my Strawberry and Pear Shortcake, to pay homage to that wonderful creation that saved my sanity in Kyoto.

#1 Grease the base and sides of your cake tin, then place a circle of parchment paper in the base and strips around the edges. The butter under the parchment paper will hold it in place and prevent it from slipping when you pour in your batter.

If yo…

Nami is Moving into No. 5 Orchard Street

I had visions of Japanese Quails dancing around my veggie patch whilst I tended to my crops of beetroots and broccoli.... but our resident Magpies had other ideas.

I should have seen it coming, the Magpies terrorize my chickens on a somewhat daily basis.... BUT they rarely go beyond flying overhead to frighten them. Today, they got gutsy enough to land, and chase my poor chooks under the deck. I heard all the screaming and yelling and ran to the backdoor to check on them (next door has ALOT of big Manx Cats that prowl the streets, they've never bothered my chooks before but there's a first time for everything) and instead found a trio of Magpies two herding my chickens into a corner and one in the veggie patch aggressively attacking Nami!

I ran outside in my dressing gown and Ugg boots to her rescue, scooped her up and bought her inside to safety. She's missing a good chunk of feathers from her back, but no blood was drawn. Still, there's no chance I'm putting her back out there, I would be paranoid every time I left the house that she'd be attacked again!

The solution, we've built her a fully enclosed home, and she's moving into number 5 Orchard Street (all my pet enclosures are lined up in between my two rows of fruit trees, dubbed Orchard St... I even have a street sign :p). The moral of the story, Quails (even large quail like my Nami) require an enclosed aviary... no matter how safe you think your backyard is!