California Fig Stir Fried Beef

Servings: 3

Prep Time
Cook Time
Total Time
By Robert Del Grande


  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon Sambal chili paste or Gochujang chili paste
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons peanut oil or olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
  • 2 ounces California Dried Figs, stems removed, chopped, about 5 figs
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored and sliced
  • 1, 12-ounce top sirloin steak or shoulder under blade steak (Denver Steak), thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup water (or beef broth)
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ ground black pepper


  • ½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • ½ cup dry roasted peanuts, roughly chopped


  1. Combine the sesame oil, chili paste, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and maple syrup in a small bowl. Mix until all ingredients are combined. Set this chili paste sauce aside.

  2. In a very broad, deep skillet or a wok, heat the peanut oil over high heat until hot. Sauté the garlic, onion, ginger, figs, and red bell pepper until lightly browned and aromatic, about 3 minutes.

  3. Add the slices of beef and toss or stir to lightly cook, 2 to 3 minutes.

  4. Add the chili paste sauce to the beef and stir to coat all ingredients. Cook 1 to 2 more minutes until the sauce thickens and the beef is cooked through.


  5. Add the water (or broth), salt, and pepper. Add a little extra water if necessary to fully deglaze the pan.

  6. Garnish with the chopped cilantro, green onions, and peanuts. Serve with steamed rice, if desired.


  • The preparation time, which is fairly quick, may be longer than the cooking time.  Everything needs to be ready before the beef is added to the skillet.  The skillet used needs to be as broad as possible.  The ingredients should not be allowed to steam.  The key is to get the ingredients to caramelize and thicken slightly before deglazing the pan with water or beef broth.  Since the beef is thinly sliced, it will cook through quickly.