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

Sunday, January 16, 2011

BREAD: Traditional White Bread

Traditional White Bread


2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast

3 tablespoons white sugar

2 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)

3 tablespoons lard, softened

1 tablespoon salt

6 1/2 cups bread flour

PREP TIME 20 min

COOK TIME 30 min

READY IN 2 hrs 30 min

Original recipe yield 2 - 9x5 inch loaves


In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water. Stir in lard, salt and two cups of the flour. Stir in the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, beating well after each addition. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes.

Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.

Deflate the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into two equal pieces and form into loaves. Place the loaves into two lightly greased 9x5 inch loaf pans. Cover the loaves with a damp cloth and let rise until doubled in volume, about 40 minutes.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).

Bake at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) for about 30 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped.

9.26.09 Reflection:

I have noticed that this recipe is slightly different from the roll recipe. This bread requires straight sugar to feed the yeast instead of honey and included lard. I hate the word lard. Anyway, I think I understand the correct temperature of water and my yeast proofed nicely. I paid close attention to the amount of flour I added remember how I got a little carried away last week. I am surprised at how easy this is becoming and I am hoping that this works. I am curious why this bread does not require any kneading. I’m guessing that the mixing process creates sufficient glutton. I will ask Melinda or Ben about this.

The recipe says the bread should rise in about an hour but it took almost two hours before I thought it had doubled in size. I hope this does not change anything.

I love the smell of bread baking in the oven. Delicious!

The loves look pretty good but one loaf has a huge bubble in it and I wonder if that is because I let is rise too much. Hum? All in all this was a successful baking experience. I am feeling more confident and am starting to get excited about next week.

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