Katsu is short for tonkatsu, meaning breaded pork cutlet and katsu curry is one of the most popular dishes in Japan. Katsu curry is usually served with rice and red-dyed pickled daikon on the side.
Curry is a very popular dish in Japan. It is commonly served in three main forms: curry rice (karē raisu), karē udon (thick noodles) and katsu-karē. Japanese curry is totally different from Indian curry, requiring no spices whatsoever, which produces a milder flavour accessible to young children and adults alike. In this recipe, I use stock from boiling some chicken to bring more flavour to the curry. If you want a particularly meaty curry, you can shred the chicken and add it at the end, or it can be left out and used in other recipes.
150 g of pork loin
1 cup of panko
1/2 cup of flour
1 medium egg (beaten)
150g chicken thigh or wings (optional – just to make the chicken stock)
1tbs of sake (optional – see above)
1 tablespoon of ginger (optional – see above)
Japanese curry sauce mix
800ml-1000ml water left over from boiling a chicken (or just water. The amount depends on the Japanese sauce mix you are using, so refer to the packet)
2 large potatoes
1 medium sized carrot
2-3 medium yellow onions
2 tablespoons of garlic
1 cup of rice
2 tablespoons of pickled red radish
Salt & Pepper
Set the chicken to simmer with the ginger and sake until cooked through. Meanwhile fry a couple of cloves of garlic in vegetable oil and slice up the vegetables. Fry everything together until the onions have wilted slightly. When the chicken has cooked through, pour the water through a sieve to remove debris, then pour this water onto the vegetables (use the amount of water according to your curry mix’s instructions). Then add half the packet of the curry mix. The curry packaging varies in size, so you should just refer to the instructions and make sure you add the amount of water and mix as appropriate.
Tap the pork loins firmly with the back of a knife to tenderize. Then season well with salt and pepper, and push the pork loins together as the tapping will have spread them out slightly. This will ensure the katsu is tender. Prepare your beaten egg, panko and flour in 3 bowls. Then, taking each piece of pork, dip in the flour, the egg and the panko, then lay carefully in a frying pan with 1cm of hot oil in it to shallow fry. The oil shouldn’t be too hot – test it first by putting the tip of a toothpick or a wooden chopstick in to see if bubbles form. If they slowly appear, the oil is at the correct temperature. If they appear suddenly and bubble violently, the oil is too hot. Fry the pork loins on both sides until golden.
Serve the curry on a bed of white rice, then lay the chopped pork loin on top. Garnish with red radish.