Vegan Konjac Steak

Vegan konjac “steak” that is meaty and chewy similar to a fatty cut of beef. Seared and glazed with a savory, umami sauce.

Konjac (Konnyaku) is a type of Japanese yam cake that is typically eaten in hot pots and stews — you might be familiar with its elongated brother, shirataki (“miracle”) noodles. Yep, perhaps the most “miracle” part of konnyaku is that it is 97% water. This makes it a favorite amongst dieters and vegetarians in Japan, because its soluble fibers give satiation while containing almost 0 calories. Given our culinary agenda, its high water content also means that it will soak up any flavorings we put it in.


Vegan Konjac Steak

5 from 9 votes
Recipe by George L. Course: LunchCuisine: JapaneseDifficulty: Easy
Servings

2

servings
Prep time

15

minutes
Cooking time

10

minutes

Vegan konjac “steak” that is meaty and chewy similar to a fatty cut of beef. Seared and glazed with a savory, umami sauce.

Ingredients

  • 1 block (255 g) konjac (Japanese yam cake)

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, for frying

  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce

  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce

  • 1 tablespoon mirin

  • 1 teaspoon blackstrap molasses

  • 1 teaspoon mushroom bouillon

  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar

  • 1 scallion, for topping

  • 1 pinch shichimi (seven-spice), for topping (optional)

Directions

  • Prepare the Konjac. Start by filleting the konjac into two thinner slices. Bring a pot of lightly-salted water to boil, and place the konjac slices in. Parboil for 3-5 minutes. Note: This parboiling step is meant to get rid of konjac’s natural fishy odor. It also helps also helps firm up the konjac. Drain the konjac slices, and let them cool for a minute. Note: make sure to dry the konjac slices well, so they can develop a good sear later. Score them on both sides, then cut each slice into 1.5-2 cm wide strips.
  • Prepare the Seasoning. In a bowl, combine dark soy sauce, light soy sauce, mirin, blackstrap molasses, mushroom bouillon, and rice vinegar. Mix well to combine.
  • Cook the Konjac. Heat up 1-2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a cast iron or non-stick pan over medium-high heat. Add the konjac steaks into the pan and sear until each side is lightly-golden brown and crisp, about 5-7 minutes. Near the end of cooking, add the prepared seasoning. Note: Be careful not to burn this sauce! Lower the heat if your pan seems too hot. Glaze the steaks nicely and allow flavors to infuse, for about 1 minute, before removing from the pan.
  • To serve. Serve over a bed of white rice with thinly sliced scallions and an optional sprinkle of Japanese seven-spice. Enjoy immediately.

Notes

  • For extra richness. Try basting the konnyaku steaks with about 1 tablespoon of vegan butter, just like how you would finish a steak.
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Tiffani
6 months ago

While I wouldn’t call it “steak,” this is definitely a meaty and tasty dish. This was my first time working with konnyaku and I look forward to playing with it some more. Thanks for posting!