The Wrong Kind of Weekend


So let me tell you about our weekend because it was just all kinds of off. It started with my plan to stay in Berkeley overnight to focus on my studies and go to school on Saturday until the playoffs at 7pm. Well oddly enough, the game actually started at 12:30pm, instead of the usual 7. Then Daniel’s cousin happened to be visiting from Portland this weekend and Daniel offered to drive him out to Atwater, except Atwater is an hour east when we needed to drive an hour west to get to the game. That meant a 2 hour drive. The solution was to let Gerry (the cousin in question), take my dad’s car, which happened to be with me since I had taken it to get new tires recently (my dad has my older car). Then at the very last minute my father calls and says he’s going to a funeral and needed his car. After a quick morning drive through the carwash place, we finally settled on letting Gerry take my new car since I wouldn’t need it. All of this occurred at some early hour of Saturday when we usually stay in bed til 12 on this day of R&R. Eventually we made it to the stadium and it was still morning. Why was this happening? We were basically still half asleep. Fast forward, we stopped by Whole Foods on the way home and there we bought the ingredients for our next recipe, Rose water cheesecake. From the beginning the directions weren’t very clear but we gave it a try anyway. It failed miserably. We even got caster sugar. Do you know how hard they are to find! So what happened? you ask.

The egg and sugar batter did not stiffen up at all. It remained a liquid which had me going for the whisk to replace the paddle. I knew this would generate air bubbles but I had to try something. Because of the airiness of the batter, the cake rised like a mother-f**ker. The water bath got through the pan and into the fillo crust which left the crust soggy. The top was burnt, which was fixed by flipping over the cake (someone online said to remove the crust), and that’s when I noticed the inside of the actual cake. The egg/sugar batter separated from the cream cheese in in the form of little balls. WHAT?? Oh and don’t even get me started on the praline. Shit really hit the fan with that one. I was ready to throw the cake away. Daniel tells me not to as he eats the remains of the crust. “I’ll blend it!” I say. It turned out remarkable. I even made pomegranate molasses and still had some pistachios left. Fillo dough lined the walls of the ramkins and butter brushed on like a Mona Lisa. I was giggling the whole time because I knew everything would be okay since I transferred the cake to a food processor and blended it till it got so smooth. The batter was chilling while the ramkins baked in the oven. I dumped an entire month of dirty cloths over the mezzanine. Yes a month. Everything has been harder to do since school started. It’s like one day I shave my leg and I look down and it appears as if it hadn’t been shaved for week and it actually had been a week. Like whoa where did all the time go?


Today a friend of mine invited Daniel and me over to her place where my mom also brought some home cooked dishes. It was cut short as we were meeting Gerry down the street where he’d return my car and hop in with Daniel where they spend one last hour together before Daniel drops him off at the airport. Tomorrow is Monday and while I don’t have a problem with Mondays, I am starting to see why people don’t like it so much. Anyways, sorry folks, no recipe today.


Oatmeal & Poached Eggs


My school week had a lot of up and downs and the last thing I could think of was what to cook this weekend since it was my turn to pick. Come this morning, I woke up at some AM hour and did not actually leave the bed until close to 1pm. Daniel apologized for this and I told him, “it’s not your fault, it’s not my fault either, I choose to stay in bed and I don’t regret it at all.” It’s true. Besides the fact that I have a 7 page essay due on Monday ( I JUST turned in a 6 page paper), and a shit-ton of reading to do between now and Monday, I really just wanted a few hours of staring at the ceiling, playing TwoDots until I run out of lives, and the occasional refreshing of my Instagram feed. The best part of it, no one came to bother me, not Daniel, not Mambo, and not even Gilly who’s task every morning is to sprint up the stairs and use the force of her tail to bang on everything on route just to wake me up and find her on the side of my bed with a ball in her mouth, one that is proportionally too big. Around 12:47 I told myself to cook something up and get right to my writing (which I knew wouldn’t happen so easily).


If you’ve been to Williams-Sonoma, you know they’ve got a bunch of really cool things. During my recent trip to Portland, I picked up what seems to look like a bathtub for a single egg. It was an egg poacher and for almost all of my culinary life, I’ve been trying to find the most easy ways to poach an egg. This is it.

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Spicy Turkey Barbacoa Street Tacos


I’m really dreading to go to work tomorrow but I got most of the stuff done at home this morning so I’m not too concerned with going back to work after taking a vacation to Portland last Tuesday. We flew back home early in the AM on Saturday so we started prepping our next recipe. A few weeks ago, around the time we were looking for recipes to cook for our anniversary, I found this from Bon Appetit and saved it for a later time like this weekend. I really like barbacoa and I saw “turkey” so it must be a healthier version, but it looked time consuming just like barbacoa takes all day, sometimes longer, to cook.IMG_9843

What I like about this recipe:

  • It’s turkey and not red meat (but I still love read meat)
  • It has a favorable taste with a kick of spice
  • The turkey meat comes out really tender and falls of the bones easily
  • It is easy to cook
  • The sauce


Some things to consider:

  • We feel this recipe can be based on preference wise. You can remove, add anything you want to your liking.
  • It can be spicy for those who cannot handle spicy foods. Follow the notes on the recipe card to reduce the spiciness.
  • The cooking can be messy and the sauce can stain


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Portland – Spring 2015

Photo Mar 24, 10 44 06 AM

It was sometime in 2013, on our way to Los Angeles for a music festival, where we took an early morning drive. With the lack of sleep, we found ourselves delirious with a passion (this occurs on every road trip really), and our topics would range from how Ozzy speaks Spanish to a made up song about all the different types of chips the world has to offer (Cheetos, Doritos, Fritos). On this trip we listened to a new Kanye West album. Daniel had played a specific song and asked me what the song reminded me of. “A Marilyn Manson song?” I answer. He though the same. “Whatever happened to that guy?” “His autobiography is really good.” “Imagine going to a Manson concert?” “Let’s go!” I, then over the span of almost two years, would check up on tour dates as there would be none. Then on another road trip to LA with friends, a new M.M. single was played. The next day while I was standing in line at the International Makeup Artist Trade show with my face and fingers pressed onto my phone, hurrying to search for tickets, I was able to find a show in Seattle, just in the middle of Spring Break, except it was sold out. Portland was next on the list, and I had to sacrifice a long time awaited trip to Seattle for something we put on our bucket list over a sleepy drive. The tickets were then given to Daniel as an anniversary gift and he completely forgot about that drive. Luckily, I had a saved note in my phone, dated in 2013 to prove to him.

Back when The Sleepy Kitchen was my own personal food blog in 2011, I made a post about my first road trip to Portland (now we don’t even bother with a 11 hour drive and fly instead). It  definitely left a mark because Portland became a bi-yearly thing, and since Daniel’s cousins moved there after living in Germany for a few years, we devote a three or four day weekend to this beautiful city three to four times a year. Many of our trips to PDX (a nickname for the city and also their airport) usually consist of a jam-packed itinerary and more food then our bodies can handle, but this specific trip was far more relaxing.

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Spring Barbecue Sage Chicken


After I ordered my iced soy latte – with very light ice, at the Starbucks drive-through, I pull into the line of cars and wait for my turn to pay. Arcade Fire’s Reflektor is playing on Spotify over the speakers, and I move my shoulders up and down alternatively, which then leads to nodding my head to the beat – somewhere among this my chin moves up and I found my eyes on the ginormous sunroof in my car where I discover a bunch of white petals. Spring is here, I say in my head, which was true because it was in fact March 20th, the first day of spring. I pay at the window and the cashier tells me it will take about five minutes for my pour-over. “I’ll come inside then,” I say. I pull out of the lane and into a parking spot under one of the trees that dropped a hundreds and thousands of these petals.

(edited with VSCO)

It started to get warm here last weekend and that’s when I suggested to Daniel that we should barbecue. We had planned on it this weekend which is all I was looking forward to, because in addition to Spring starting, it was also in fact two things: 1) Persian New Year & 2) The start of Spring Break. Daniel is also taking the week off which is a rare thing because he never takes a vacation unless he’s dying.

We decided to limit our barbecue choice: instead of buying all the meats and grilling all the things, we choose singularly on chicken. Daniel loves thighs, especially mine, but I am really talking about organic chicken thighs, and we don’t make enough of it. We both took separate time to research what we could do with the thighs, and ended up creating our own recipe not knowing how it was going to turn out – it was perfection.


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