Black Pepper Beef

Simple and delicious, this relies on the freshness of the peppercorns, so buy small amounts regularly and crush them just before you’re going to cook with them. I’m very fond of this dish with a bowl of rice and some steamed vegetables as a delicious dinner for two.


  • 350 g (12 oz) beef fillet, thickly sliced across the grain
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 small Spanish onion, diced
  • 1 red capsicum (pepper), diced
  • 2 long red chillies, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons black peppercorns, crushed
  • 3 tablespoons fresh chicken stock
  • 2 teaspoons light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce


  • 2 teaspoons shaoxing
  • 1 teaspoon kecap manis
  • 1 teaspoon oyster sauce


To make the marinade, mix the shaoxing, kecap manis and oyster sauce. Add the beef and toss until well coated, then leave for 20 minutes.

Heat a wok until just smoking. Add half the oil and, when hot, stir-fry the beef in batches until well browned, then remove. Add the remaining oil to the wok and stir-fry the onion, capsicum, chilli, garlic and pepper until fragrant. Return the beef to the wok with the stock, soy and oyster sauces and stir-fry until the sauce reduces slightly.


As with all these dishes, chicken, pork or even lamb could easily be substituted for the beef. Another amazing dish would be to stir-fry some chopped lobster or a mud crab with this pepper sauce; I love seafood with pepper.