Hoshigaki are preserved persimmon, a delicacy given as gifts at special times of the year. We've just harvested kilos of persimmon - what better time to learn a new skill. If you are interested in learning how to make your own hoshigaki here's a good link and here's another.
The fruit is peeled, leaving the stalk, dunked in boiling water for 30 seconds to remove some of the tannin, and then strung up to dry - usually under the eaves of your Japanese house, here it's in bird-repelling net bags under the verandah. In a couple of days the fruit will be taken out of the bags and gently massaged. Over time a white bloom (fruit sugars) will appear. Massaging goes on for a few weeks - and eventually, hopefully, one has a lot of delicate, soft dried persimmon.