Katsu curry is pretty much a perfect dish. What's not to like about deep-fried breaded cutlet on top of rice, that is then topped by Japanese-style curry? For the uninitiated, however, it is a bit of a stomach bomb -- ultra satisfying, but also ultra filling ... which is probably why it is my husband's absolute favorite dish. And I get the impression that katsu, in all its wonderful forms, is a favorite of many.
Though this dish is easy to make, it has a few moving parts which make it time-consuming. It requires three components that are just assembled together at the last moment. To cut down on prep time, I use S&B golden curry mix. It seems to achieve that perfect Japanese curry flavor, plus I've been eating it since I was a kid. If instant mixes are not your thing, you can make your own kare from scratch using S&B curry powder (not the mix), flour and butter, making what is called a "roux".
- 2 1/2" pork cutlets (I prefer to go thinner, but it makes it less juicy)
- salt & pepper
- 1 egg, whipped
- 1/2 cup tempura flakes
- vegetable oil for deep frying
- Curry sauce
- 1/4 lb beef flank (you can substitute chicken), chopped into small bite-sized pieces
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 carrot
- 1 small potato
- 3 cups water
- 1/2 package S&B Golden curry mix (see above if you want to make from scratch)
- Garnish & sides
- Cooked rice - enough for the # of servings you are making
- 7 spice (shichimi togarashi 七味唐辛子)
- Make the rice so that it will be ready by the time everything else is.
- Then, prepare the curry sauce. Saute the onion and chopped beef in vegetable oil in a saucepan for a few minutes. Add the carrots and potato and let cook for another 5 minutes, adding more oil if needed. Add 3 cups of water and let simmer for 20-25 minutes. Then break off 4 of the S&B cubes (1/2 of the package) and crumble into the water. Mix continuously until all of the blocks have dissolved and the curry has thickened. Turn the heat down to low and cover.
- Now, for the tonkatsu: cut any nasty parts off the pork cutlets and pound them lightly with a rolling pin to tenderize. Salt and pepper both sizes. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, put a generous amount of vegetable oil in a frying pan and bring to 320 degrees.
- Put flour, egg and panko in separate bowls/dishes. First flour the cutlets, then dunk in egg then press into panko (on both sides). Fry for about 4-5 minutes on each side, until golden crusty brown. Then set aside on a paper towel on a rack to dry and cool. After they cool, slice the cutlets into little ~ 1" slices, but keep them roughly together.
- Get your plates ready. Add a scoop of rice, lay on the cutlet pieces, then you can either put the curry over the whole thing, or as I prefer, put it somewhat on the side, so that the pork pieces can stay crispy and individuals can dip into the curry sauce. Serve hot and with shichimi as a topping. You can also serve with tsukemono (pickles) if you have them.
Serving Size: 2
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Preparation Time: 40 minutes