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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…

Hidden Orchard Quince Harvest

This morning’s Hidden Orchard Quince harvest! 1 tree, four and half volunteers and 150kgs of Quince!

Armed with stick pickers (very literally a long stick with teeth and a catching bag on the end of it), and ladders, four and a half of us, the half being little Jackson whom sorted all the 'floor fruit' into good and bad boxes for us, picked away at this glorious Quince tree until it was bare. Not as hard as it sounds, for every Quince we picked, 10 more fell with it! Made for a quick and easy pick, but we could have used some hard hats!

150kgs of Quince later...
Scott, the owner of the tree, didn't have any use for the massive amounts of fruit it was bearing, and so he donated ALL 150kgs to us to distribute throughout Ballarat.
1 ‘Cotton-On charity bag’ worth of Quince came home with me to be put to use in the Hoskins Hens kitchen, only problem is… I've never eaten Quince before! Not even anything Quince flavoured! I'll have to play around with it a little before I start throwing it into cakes. I'm thinking a German Streusel Cake with Poached Quince, but we'll see!

The Hidden Orchard Volunteers harvest fruit from trees in local backyards or public areas that would have otherwise gone to waste and redistribute it within the community through channels such as The Food is Free Laneway, Second Bite, The Salvation Army, The Soup Bus and Community Cooking Programs at the Ballarat Community Health Center and Wendouree Neighbourhood House.