Jess Pryles

Steak bites with blue cheese, fig & bourbon jam

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You will definitely want to make a jar of this fig & bourbon jam as soon as possible to create these delicious steak & blue cheese bites.

This recipe actually has two quite separate components. First, let’s talk about the concept of steak as an appetizer. We nearly always see steak as the main event during a meal, a thick slab of beef with a potato and maybe a vegetable or two. Time for an overhaul! These steak bites take the best of a carefully curated forkful and repeat it again and again, as an appetizer! So, imaging cutting off a perfect slice of steak, slathering it with rich blue cheese, then dolloping on the perfect amount of sweet fig & bourbon jam for a completely heavenly mouthful. Yup, steak can and should be an appetizer more often.

steak bites with blue cheese

Now, let’s talk about the stand-alone awesomeness of the fig & bourbon jam. It’s actually easier to spread than conventional jam, nearly a paste consistency, and it’s definitely a utility player in your culinary arsenal. Spread it on pancakes, toast, tart apples, mix it with ice cream or even use it to glaze pork. You’ll keep finding things you want to add it to, believe me.

Back the the magic of these steak bites… To make these, you really only need a recipe for the jam, the rest is a matter of assembly. Just take some slices of baguette (preferably buttered and put under the broiler for a minute or two), top with a slice of perfectly medium rare steak (filet or strip work best for this so you get uniform little pieces), a chunk of blue and a small spoonful of the jam. I prefer to use Cambozola for this – it’s a hybrid of Gorgonzola & a triple cream brie – so you get all the creaminess with a big punch of blue.

If you need a little help on cooking your steak just right, you may want to check out my article on reverse searing, which nails it every time!

appetizers with fig and bourbon jam

Print Recipe

Fig And Bourbon Paste (perfect for steak bites!)

Makes enough to fill one 8oz jar, approximately. If you don't sterilise and bottle this according to traditional canning methods, it'll last 1-2 weeks in the fridge.  Author: Jess Pryles


  • 7 oz dried figs
  • 1/2 cup bourbon
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp white sugar


  1. Cut the hard nub off the stem of the figs then place in saucepan. Add water, bourbon and lemon juice.
  2. Bring mix to the boil, then lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes, or until figs have softened. It may help to break the harder ones up with a spoon a little as they cook.
  3. Using caution because the mixture is hot, transfer mix to a blender and blend thoroughly until there are no large chunks of skin.
  4. Return the blended mix to saucepan over low heat, and add sugar. Stir to dissolve sugar and thicken to a paste/spread consistency,


Jess Pryles is a full fledged Hardcore Carnivore. She’s a cook, author, and TV personality specializing in the field of meat, with a particular expertise in beef. She’s also a respected authority on live fire cooking and BBQ. Born in Australia, she now resides in Austin, Texas.

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