Beef with Bell Peppers and Tomatoes

Beef with Bell Peppers and Tomatoes is an unusual American Chinese recipe reconstructed from memory.  As a child, Vito’s parents would often take him and his siblings to dine out at the New Moon Chinese Restaurant in Union City, NJ; this dish was among Vito’s favorites on the menu.  Vito was fascinated by the use of tomatoes in it, which he can’t recall ever seeing on any Chinese restaurant menu in those days.  Beef with Bell Peppers and Tomatoes is different and delicious.

Beef with Bell Peppers and Tomatoes

Prep Time: 15 minutes (marinade and slicing beef) plus 30 minutes (vegetables prep), Marinating Time: 1 to 8 hours, Total Active Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes Serves: 4

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For the marinade:

  • 1 Tb Corn Starch
  • 1 Tb Granulated Sugar
  • ½ tsp White Pepper
  • 1 Tb Minced Garlic (feel free to use more if you like)
  • 3 Tbs Soy Sauce
  • 3 Tbs Dry Sherry
  • 1 lb thinly sliced Beef Top or Bottom Round

For the main dish:

  • 4 Green Bell Peppers
  • 1 large Onion, peeled and trimmed
  • 3 cloves Garlic, peeled and trimmed
  • 2″ piece of fresh Ginger, peeled
  • 4 large very ripe Round/Beefsteak Tomatoes
  • 8 oz. sliced Water Chestnuts
  • 1 tsp Crushed Red Pepper flakes
  • 4 Tbs Cooking Oil (Canola or Peanut/Canola Oil blend recommended)
  • 2 Tbs Soy Sauce
  • 2 Tbs Dry Sherry

Beef with Bell Peppers and Tomatoes


  1. Combine all the marinade ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Slice the beef into thin strips, trimming excess fat.
  3. Combine the beef with the marinade, cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour, preferably longer; I usually do this in the morning and let the beef marinate all day until dinner time that evening.
  4. Remove the marinating beef from the refrigerator and let it come up to room temperature.
  5. Using tongs to remove the beef from the marinade to a separate bowl, reserving the marinade.
  6. Rinse, stem and seed the green bell peppers, cut into bite-size pieces and place in a large bowl.
  7. Cut the onion in half lengthwise, then cut into thin slices lengthwise and combine with the peppers.
  8. Mince the garlic and ginger and combine with the peppers and onion.
  9. Rinse and core the tomatoes, cut in half and each half into quarters lengthwise yielding 8 pieces per tomato and place in a separate bowl.
  10. Drain the sliced water chestnuts and combine with the tomatoes.
  11. Heat the cooking oil in a wok or a wide, deep frying pan over a medium high heat.
  12. Stir-fry the peppers, onion, garlic and ginger until just beginning to soften then spoon back into the bowl and keep warm.
  13. Add a little more cooking oil if needed to the pan; once the oil is hot; over a high heat, add the beef and crushed red pepper and stir-fry until the beef is browned.
  14. Lower the heat to medium high and add the tomatoes and water chestnuts to the pan and stir-fry until tomatoes just begin to soften but still maintain their shape.
  15. Return the cooked peppers, etc. to the pan and stir to mix all the ingredients together.
  16. Add the soy sauce and dry sherry to the remaining marinade and add to the pan; stir-fry for another 2 minutes.
  17. Remove from the heat and serve.

Beef with Bell Peppers and Tomatoes


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