Babushka Delight

As a child, Liz’s father did the bulk of the cooking in their home. Norm Robinson was a creative and resourceful culinary artist, never cooking from a recipe and always applying the creativity required when feeding a family on a meager budget. As a hungry child, when Liz began smelling tasty aromas waft from the kitchen she would consistently ask, “Dad, what’s for dinner?” And much to her chagrin he would he would respond, “Babushka Delight…and then insert a random number.” A variation of Baked Ziti would be called Babushka Delight #14 and Pork Chops and Rice entitled Babushka Delight #982…no rhyme or reason for the numbering system and never a dish or number repeated. Night after night, meal after meal, our table and stomachs were warmed with a series of meals made by a loving father each entitled Babushka Delight. As a child, anxious for dinner, Liz found his predictable answer a bit silly. Now, as an adult, when contemplating the daily questions, what shall we have for dinner?” she hears the trusted words of her father ringing clearly in her mind…”Well, tonight we are having Babushka Delight.”

Burke grew up working inside the delicious walls of a professional kitchen at his families business, Jacob Lake Inn nestled near the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. While standing on milk crates Burke joined his parents to help peel potatoes, crack eggs, flip burgers, and sling hash. Through this process Burke developed the confidence of a chef, the speed of a line cook, and the creativity of a working mans Iron Chef.

Growing up in a foodie family has real benefits for a newly married couple. For Burke nothing brings a bigger smile than the potential of a handful of chopped onion, celery, carrot, and garlic sautéing in a few hearty splashes of a fine olive oil…and Liz is more than happy to sample the tasty outcomes.

Together Burke and Liz enjoy nothing more than a fine meal shared with family and friends. In keeping with tradition of both families, Babushka Delight is a collection of their favorite recipes and culinary creations.


The Texas Rich’s

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Babushka Delight #2.5: Turkey Day Magic


1 Butterball Turkey Breast (in brine) 3 to 4 lbs, thawed.
1 loaf roasted garlic (garlic baked in) artesian bread
1 loaf rosemary olive oil artesian bread
1 large yellow onion
1/2 red bell pepper
1 small sweet onion
6 Tbs minced garlic
1 honeycrisp apple
6 stalks celery
2 cans chicken broth
1 cup 2% milk
1/2 cup whipping cream
3/4 stick butter
3/4 cup flour


Simon and Garfunkel Spice Mix (parsley, rubbed sage, rosemary, thyme)
smoked paprika
chile powder
garlic powder
onion powder
sweet basil
sea salt
fresh ground pepper medley


the night before, slice olive oil rosemary and baked garlic bread into thin slices and place on cooling racks to dry out.

The next morning at about 10:30 or noon...whenever you get up...turn the oven on to 325 degrees and then cut onions in half and slice them. Chop the red pepper, celery and apple. Place the onions, apple, red pepper and 4 of the 6 Tbs of garlic in the bottom of your roasting pan. Place the Butterball Turkey Breast on top of the chopped vegetables. Dust the top of the turkey breast with the smoked paprika, chile powder, garlic powder, onion powder, etc...then place the sliced sweet onion and the other 2 Tbs of garlic on top of the turkey breast. Pour one can of chicken broth around the turkey breast (but don't pour it on the turkey breast or you will undo all of the spices that you placed on the turkey breast just now). If the oven is at temperature, place the lid on the pan holding the turkey and place it in the oven. If it isn't at temp, you can place the lid on or not as you choose...but you will want the lid on when you place it in the oven.

During the meantime, cut up the dried bread into cubes and place in a bowl.

Check the temperature after a couple of hours. When the temperature is at 170 degrees, remove the turkey from the oven. Remove the turkey breast and place on a plate. Pour the liquid and vegetables through a strainer. Save the liquid. Place the turkey back in the cook pan and place on the burner that vents the oven to keep the turkey moist and warm.

Place the vegetables in the blender. Add several Tbs of liquid back in and blend them together. Then add 1/2 stick of butter to the mix and blend together one more time. Pour the mixture into the bowl of dried bread. Mix it together in the bowl. Taste a bit of it. If it needs it, feel free to add some of the spices listed above to taste.

Put the stuffing in the oven at 350 degrees covered for 20 minutes. Uncover and place back in until the top browns up and gets all crispy yum.

Turn the liquid into a gravy using the flour and the remaining butter to make a roux and then add the liquid and the other can of chicken stock to the pan. Add the milk and cream and bring to a boil. Then remove from the heat. Make sure that you whisk consistently all through this will thicken and be yummy. Season to taste.

If done correctly it should look something like this:

Serve and enjoy!

Babushka Delight # 112


1 large Smoked Sausage or Kielbasa
2 boxes Uncle Ben's Original Recipe Long Grain Wild Rice
1 med onion
4 Tbs Garlic
6 small sweet peppers (red, orange and yellow)
2 cups frozen broccoli (could be fresh but will need to be added earlier in the recipe)
2 cups frozen corn (could be canned corn but adjust water added to compensate for liquid from corn)
3 medium carrots
2 sticks celery
2 Tbs Olive Oil or 1/3 stick butter (whichever you like more)
3 Tbs soy sauce
4 1/2 Cups of Water

1 tsp Cardamom
2 tsp Basil
Garlic Powder
Onion Powder
Celery Seed
Chile Powder
Lawry's Season Salt
Original recipe Seasoning Packet from Uncle Ben's


Perform a medium chop on onions and celery. Quarter and chop carrots. Fine chop all peppers. Place carrots, onions, celery and peppers into a bowl and add the soy sauce. Stir around and let sit so that the soy sauce has covered all vegetables.

Place a large pan on the burner at medium heat and put oil or butter in pan to heat. Upon reaching temp, add vegetables.

While stirring vegetables, cut the smoked sausage or kielbasa on the bias and place in a bowl and set aside. Remember to stir the vegetables that are sauteeing in the pan.

Once the vegetables are translucent, add the sausage and cook until the sausage and vegetables start to brown. Add the rice to the pan and stir around to brown slightly. Be really careful here folks, because the rice will absorb the oil quickly and will want to scorch if you don't stir quickly. Once the rice has browned for a bit, add the water followed by the spice packets from dear sweet Uncle Ben. Stir until spice mix is constituted, turn up heat to hi and stir until pan comes to a boil. Then reduce heat to simmer and cover.

Let sit until rice reconstitutes and most liquid is gone. Add frozen broccoli and corn.

Add garlic, powder, onion powder, season salt and chile powder to taste. Add 2 tsp of basil. Tap a little it of the celery seed. Stir and let sit.

Now add cardamom...this is both for color and for a certain special "somesing" that it adds...

Stir until all liquid is gone and remove from heat. Let cool for a few moments.

Serve and Enjoy!