With excellent growing conditions recently, Australia's largest supply region and home of winter production for strawberries, Queensland, is expecting a 30% increase in berries coming into the market from this week, which is fantastic news for strawberry lovers across Australia.
According to Queensland Strawberries President, Adrian Schultz, "Warm, dry sunny days and cool nights have created perfect growing conditions which means that shoppers will soon be able to grab a few punnets of strawberries on every shop".
So, if you're a strawberry lover, there is no better time than now to head into your local store to stock up on great value fruit, with a huge influx of strawberries from local Aussie growers hitting shelves any minute!
The Queensland winter strawberry season is officially in full swing and will run until October. For more information about Queensland Strawberries visit: qldstrawberries.com.au
1 ½ cups lukewarm water
2 teaspoons dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups wholemeal plain flour
1 2/3 cups bread flour (high protein), plus a little extra for kneading
1 ½ teaspoons salt
10 Queensland strawberries, hulled and halved
Basil, handful leaves, shredded
100g fresh goats cheese
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Pour the water into a large bowl, add the yeast and sugar stirring to dissolve.
Add the olive oil followed by the flours and salt then mix with your hands to form a dough.
Turn dough onto a floured work surface and knead until the dough is elastic and smooth (adding a little flour as necessary to prevent sticking).
Alternatively, you can use a stand mixer with a dough hook; mix on medium-low for 8 minutes until the dough forms around the hook
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, shape into a ball.
Lightly oil a large clean bowl and add the dough ball. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm spot for 1½ to 2 hours, until doubled in size.
Punch down the dough. Cover again and rest for a further 20 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celsius. Grease a baking tray with olive oil and line with baking paper. Shape the dough into a rectangle or oval pressing out until about 2 cm thick.
Cover with a slightly damp towel and let rest for 30 minutes. Just before baking, dimple the dough all over with your fingertips.
Gently press the strawberries into the dough and dot over grape-sized pieces of goat's cheese. Sprinkle with coarse salt, pepper and the basil. Drizzle all over with olive oil (1-2 tablespoons).
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the bread is golden brown. Rest for 10 minutes before eating or cool completely.