North Carolina ranks first in the production of sweet potatoes, growing a record-breaking total of over 16 million pounds in 2015 alone.
In addition to their delicious taste, a major benefit of sweet potatoes is their nutritional value. The vegetable provides a healthy dose of vitamins E, A and B6, potassium and iron. Unlike most vitamin E-rich foods, sweet potatoes are virtually fat free. Just one cup of cooked sweet potatoes provides 30 milligrams of vitamin A. (By the way, it takes 23 cups of broccoli to give the same amount!) Check out the NCDA&CS Marketing Division’s website to learn more about where you can find the state’s best and healthiest sweet potatoes.
If you’re looking for a unique way to incorporate this vegetable into your diet, try the Sweet Potato and Black Bean Frittata recipe below. This recipe won the 52 Ways to Love Sweet Potatoes Contest at the N.C. State Fair.
• 1 ½ teaspoon vegetable oil
• 1 large white onion
• 2 cups fresh sweet potato (peeled and diced)
• ½ cup water
• 15 oz can seasoned black beans (rinsed)
• 11 oz can Mexicorn (drained)
• 8 large eggs
• ¼ cup milk
• 1 cup shredded cheese (preferably a mix of cheddar and smoked gouda)
• Jalapenos from a jar
• 1 jar salsa verde
• 1 ripe avocado
• Salt and pepper
1. Pre-heat the oven to about 350 degrees. Thinly slice the onion and dice the sweet potato into small cubes. Make sure to use a skillet that can fit into the oven to bake (Lisa Prince recommends a large cast-iron skillet for this).
2. Heat oil over medium heat in the skillet and then add the onions. Cook the onions over medium heat for about 3 minutes. Add the cubed sweet potato.
3. Sprinkle salt over the sweet potatoes and onions. Add about a ½ cup of water, and cover the skillet with a large lid or foil until the potatoes become soft. This should take about 10 minutes.
4. Remove the cover and cook until all the water has evaporated. Add corn and cook the vegetables until they begin to caramelize.
5. Drain the juice from your bag of beans. Once the potatoes, onions and corn begin to brown, add the black beans and toss it until it’s mixed well.
6. Beat the eggs with a ¼ cup of milk and salt and pepper. Add the egg mixture to the skillet. Turn down the heat so the eggs don’t burn.
7. Cook briefly until the eggs start to set up. Sprinkle cheese and jalapenos over the top.
8. Put the skillet in the oven and bake for approximately 10 to 15 minutes until the eggs are cooked. Turn on the broiler and broil until the cheese becomes bubbly.
9. Remove the skillet from the oven, and slice the frittata like pie. Top slices with salsa and sliced avocado. Add a dab of hot sauce if you like.