Pepper steak was another of our family’s favorite recipes when we were all growing up. I loved it, even though I was not a lover of green peppers. Later as I made it for my own family I tweaked the recipe and used sweet bell peppers. The orange or red or yellow kind that aren’t as “green” tasting. I know, if you like green peppers you won’t understand. They’re just a tad bitter to me.
I think I’m a super taster. My daughter has decided she and I are, which means we taste things a bit more than the average mouth. It’s the reason we can’t stand cilantro, among other foods. Green peppers fall into that category for me. They scream out “GREEN” to me from whatever dish they’re in. It’s a stupid thing to have to deal with and most of the time I ignore my super tasting ability and just eat the food.
So making pepper steak with chopped orange bell pepper was my tweak again the other night. I had some small steaks to use and I wanted something vaguely Asian. Pepper steak came to mind and became our dinner. I heated a medium sized nonstick skillet with a tablespoon or so of canola oil. Of course I didn’t measure it, who does? I know what a tablespoon of oil looks like by now. You could measure if you’re into precision.
When the skillet was slightly smoking, I added the steaks. I’d liberally salted and peppered both sides of each steak. The steaks seared fast, turning that luscious brown that means they’re going to be full of flavor. I flipped them and seared the second side as well. I then set them aside on a plate.
To the skillet I added some chopped onion and a cup of orange sweet bell pepper I’d chopped and frozen awhile back when they were on sale. Very handy now to just toss them in and let them sear for a couple of minutes.
I also added a tablespoon of grated ginger and another of grated garlic. I admit, I buy them in jars already minced. I actually bought a bottle that is mixed ginger and garlic, so I just added 2 tablespoons of that. I stirred the seasonings into the vegetables and let them sauté for a couple of minutes, until the onion was beginning to turn translucent.
I added the water and soy sauce to the skillet and put the steaks back in. I put a lid on my skillet and reduced the heat to low. I set a timer for 30 minutes.
At 30 minutes I added a handful of asparagus I’d cleaned and cut into smaller pieces. I’d let them steam a bit, I didn’t want them to get mushy. The asparagus is optional.
While the pepper steak simmered away I made a pot of white rice to serve with the steak and sauce. I tried to time it so it would be done when my steak and asparagus was done.
When my timer went off I taste tested for seasoning and was happy with the levels of salt and pepper. The sauce had a nice kick to it courtesy of the ginger.
I placed the steaks on a bed of white rice and ladled some sauce over each serving. I could have thickened the sauce with a little cornstarch but decided the rice would soak it up anyway. This looked and smelled SO good! I was starving, as I hadn’t eaten lunch that day.
Dinner was a success! We loved the flavors and as usual, wondered why we didn’t think to make it more often. We tend to get into new recipes so much we forget the old tried and true ones. This one needs to get bumped closer to the head of the line. It’s a recipe that never fails us!
Make a flavorful Asian pepper steak with sauce that is ready to serve over rice or noodles in an hour.
- 1# beef sirloin steaks
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- salt and pepper to taste (what you’d normally use)
- 1/2 cup onion; chopped
- 1 cup orange bell pepper; chopped
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh garlic
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 lb fresh asparagus; cut into 1 1/2″ pieces (optional)
- rice or noodles for serving
Heat a medium nonstick skillet on medium high with oil until almost smoking. Salt and pepper steaks and place in skillet. Sear on each side until very browned. If the steaks begin to curl up, use a paring knife to make a cut on the outside through the fat or membrane that is causing the problem.
Remove steaks to a plate and add onion, bell pepper, ginger and garlic to the skillet. Fry for several minutes until onion is beginning to turn translucent.
Add water and soy sauce and stir. Add steaks back to the skillet. Put a lid on the skillet and reduce heat to low. Cook for 30 minutes.
Place asparagus over steaks if using. Cook 30 more minutes.
Make rice or noodles to serve with the steak.
Taste test for seasoning and add pepper to taste.