While Rachel Kesley, the subject of this week's Chef and Tell interview, isn't a vegetarian, WaterCourse Foods, the restaurant whose kitchen she presides over, is strictly vegetarian. The menu, a mash-up of vegetables, grains, tofu, seitan, tempeh, cheeses, pastas and Mexican dishes, has a legion of devoted followers, many of whom are enamored with the sweet potato and black bean tacos, a recipe that Kesley is sharing here. "It's an interesting and fun play on your typical vegetarian tacos," she says. "The sweet potatoes make a great addition, and they're really colorful and flavorful."
Sweet potato and black bean tacos
Makes three tacos
1 sweet potato, unpeeled and diced 2 tablespoons oil, preferably an olive blend 1/4 onion, sliced 1 tablespoon garlic, minced 1/4 cup red bell pepper, chopped 1 cup of canned black beans, drained and washed (dried black beans, soaked overnight, may also be used) Juice of one half of a lime 2 tablespoons cilantro Salt and pepper to taste 1/2 cup white cabbage, shredded Three warm corn tortillas
Sliced avocado Jack or cheddar cheese Salsa
1. Parboil the sweet potatoes for 10 minutes, or until slightly soft. 2. In a hot saute pan, caramelize the onions and garlic. 3. Add peppers, sweet potato and black beans to the saute pan. 4. Add two tablespoons water and simmer for 5 minutes, or until all vegetables are soft and the sweet potato is cooked through. 5. Add salt and pepper to taste. 6. Surface each tortilla with equal amounts of filling and shredded cabbage and add a squeeze of lime and a few sprigs of cilantro.