ShaneHalbach.com

Sweet Potato Tacos

The Reason:

We had some ground turkey and we were looking for a recipe to use it up. It’s funny that this is the recipe we found because, although we did use up our ground turkey, this is clearly a sweet potato recipe, not a ground turkey recipe. (I guess technically the original recipe is a yam recipe, but we have only made it with sweet potatoes)

Anyway, this is sooo good, it might just turn you off regular tacos forever. Even if it doesn’t, it makes an excellent change of pace, and is a lot healthier than regular (ground beef) tacos to boot.

The Journey:

I know some of you will be tempted to leave out the jalapenos, but I assure you that it is not spicy, even with four jalapenos. “Yeah, but I don’t like spicy food,” you will say. “He likes spicy food, so he doesn’t understand how tender my palate is. I’m a delicate flower,” you will say. I know that there is nothing I could say to convince you poor folks, other than to physically trick you into eating it with four jalapenos and getting you to admit it wasn’t spicy before I reveal that fact. However, I can’t do that over the Internet, so you’ll have to take my word for it. Or not, I just realized, I really don’t care.

The thing you’ll notice about the filling is that it is orange. Very orange. Startlingly orange. Do not be startled, you’re doing it right.

The ground turkey is nice because it is so lean, but you can really use any kind of ground meat (i.e. beef). You’re mostly going to taste the sweet potatoes anyway.

Another thing I should mention here, is that all tortillas in our house are grilled over the open flame of the stove (we have a gas stove obviously). Just light the burner and set the tortilla directly on it. Flip it after about 10 seconds and do the other side for another 10 or so. It will seem like you are going to set the tortilla on fire. It will get little black burn marks on it. Do not be startled, you are doing it right. You can thank me later.

The Verdict:

Magically delicious.

The sweet potatoes make the filling sweet, which to me seems like it would be a bad thing, but it’s totally not.  (I do NOT like salty and sweet mixed together. It is almost pathological with me.) Also, the texture is a lot softer than ground beef, and it kind of mashes up around all of your toppings keeping everything in better.

The Recipe:

Adapted from AllRecipes.com

  • 3 sweet potatoes peeled and diced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 medium-large chopped sweet onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 jalapeno peppers, minced (you can reduce this to 2 if you are nervous about the heat, but it’s really not very spicy!)
  • 2 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup tomatillo salsa
  • 1/2-1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • warm flour tortillas
  1. Put the diced sweet potato in a microwave-safe bowl; cook in the microwave until cooked through and fork-tender, stirring every 5 minutes, 10 to 15 minutes.
  2. Coat the bottom of a large skillet with olive oil and place over medium heat;
  3. Cook and stir the turkey until crumbled and evenly brown, 5 to 7 minutes.
  4. Stir the onion, garlic, and jalapeno pepper into the turkey and continue cooking until the onions begin to caramelize, 7 to 10 minutes.
  5. Season with the chili powder, cumin, Cajun seasoning, and salt.
  6. Mash the sweet potatoes with a potato masher
  7. Pour the salsa over everything; fold the sweet potatoes into the mixture.
  8. Allow the mixture to cook until the excess moisture evaporates.
  9. Garnish with the cilantro.
  10. Heat your tortillas in the microwave if you’re a barbarian, or on the stove if you’re fancy pants like me.
  11. Serve with the warm tortillas and whatever else you put on tacos. I recommend fresh salsa (pico de gallo).
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