I have been on a deep search for the perfect sweet potato taco for roughly the past 5 years. Conor has stories of a one particular spot in Keene NH where he went to college that apparently did it right. Sadly, the place has since closed and I never got to experience the much talked about sweet potato taco. This version is the closest I have come, and personally I'm pretty happy with them!
The day that we made these was truly one of the most stressful days we have had in quite some time. We drove out to Worcester so Conor could play tennis with his parents and then on the way home we were going to stop at Wegman's, because I love it there and it was going to be like a Sunday treat for me. Then the car died, twice actually. First when I was going to go pick him up and then again in the Wegman's parking lot, with a trunk full of groceries annnnnd it was snowing.
We sat in the car for a while, a friend came and jumped us and after that didn't work we called AAA and had to be towed home. Sucking all the goodness out of our day.
So after what was originally supposed to be a relaxing and fun Sunday turned into a snowy broken car crappy-ness we came home and cooked dinner. We talked about how we're lucky to have such nice and helpful friends and family. Someone to jump the car, another to call with advice. Conor's parents for bringing him across town to where I was, my parents for having AAA (Gayle is a gold member -holllerr). Friends from work who told me what mechanic to go to, and Conor's brother to pick us up from the mechanic on a snowy Sunday evening.
Helpful people are great, much like these tacos. They are gonna make you smile.
sweet potato tacos (makes about 8 to 10 tacos):
1 large sweet potato; peeled and cubed (roughly 5 cups)
3 garlic cloves; minced
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 jalapeño; ribs and seeds removed and diced
shallot and pepper salsa:
1 medium shallot; sliced into half moons
1 teaspoon sugar
1 bell pepper; diced (i used an orange one)
pinch of crushed red pepper
15oz can of black beans; drained and rinsed
lime and avocado for serving
corn or flour tortillas
Place sweet potatoes in a medium sauce pan and cover them with water. Bring to boil and cover, let cook till they are tender. Around 15-20 minutes. Drain the water and turn heat down to low, add in jalapeño, garlic and cayenne. Stir to evenly mix and slightly break down the potatoes then turn the heat off. You just want to cook the garlic slightly so you don't get any bites of straight raw garlic..that may bum you out. Unless you like that kinda thing, then go for it! Let that hang out in the pan while you cook the peppers and shallots.
In a small sauce pan heat a glug of olive oil to medium-low and add shallots. Let them cook for 3 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally and being sure not to burn them. Turn the heat down if it seems to be too hot. After 5 minutes sprinkle in the teaspoon of sugar and give it a stir. This will caramelize them a little. Now add the bell pepper and continue to sauté until they soften a little too, about another 5 minutes. Add a pinch of red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Now place this shallot and pepper salsa in a bowl and return pan to heat, add black beans to pot to warm them.
Assemble! Warm your tortillas in a low oven if you'd like. Conor loves a warm tortilla. Start with a scoop of your sweet potato mixture, then black beans and lastly the shallot and pepper salsa. Add lime juice and avocado.