With good fortune cooler weather will have arrived by the time you are reading this. If not, save this recipe for later, because all who have tasted Black Bean Sweet Potato Slow Cooker Stew have given enthusiastic endorsements. Black beans and sweet potatoes, frijoles negros y camotes, are a favorite ingredient combination in Mexican cuisine, and a taste of this stew you will tell you why. Nothing more is needed for this meal except warm flour or corn tortillas, or my favorite Sanissimo tostadas, which are “baked, not fried,” as the saying goes, and do not require heating. They are sold in Mexican markets in hexagonal cardboard boxes. Add a dish of sliced cucumbers to pass, and a condiment plate of lime wedges, avocado slices and chopped cilantro to be added by each diner as taste dictates, and presto! a delicious Mexican meal is ready.
BLACK BEAN & SWEET POTATO SLOW COOKER STEW
1 C dry black beans, sorted, rinsed, and covered with water by 2”, brought to boiling then simmered until tender, adding additional hot water to keep beans just covered if necessary. (This can be done a day early. Or use a 15-oz. can of black beans, with the juice.)
While beans are cooking, combine the rest of the ingredients in large crock pot:
1 large sweet potato, peeled & cubed
1 medium yellow or white onion, diced
1 14-oz can crushed or cubed tomatoes, with juice
Juice of one orange
Juice of 1 small lime (or ½ if using the large variety of lime)
2 T coconut oil
1 or 2 canned chipotles in adobo, plus 1-2 T of the sauce (the amount used depends on the “heat” desired – I like 2)
1 T of grated piloncillo (or 1 packed T brown sugar)
3 garlic cloves, peeled & finely diced
1 t cumin
Now add the cooked beans, with the cooking water, and stir to combine the ingredients.
Cook with slow cooker on high temperature for 8 hours. Alternatively, simmer on stove top over low heat, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until sweet potatoes are tender and flavors meld, about an hour and a half. Serve with the condiment plate and a small pitcher of media crema for diners to add what they like to their stew. Leftovers? Reheat and eat, or warm on the stove top, cooking away some of the liquid, then wrap small portions in flour tortillas for delicious burritos. Provecho!