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What is katsudon?
When it comes to fast food, donburis (どんぶり) are one of the best options in Japan.
Donburis consist of rice served in a bowl and are extremely popular. And of course, katsudon is one of them.
At home, when we have a craving, this is the donburi we turn to.
It consists of a breaded pork cutlet (known as tonkatsu) that is accompanied by onion cooked in a mild sauce full of umami. Finally, a beaten egg is added and cooked until it’s 80% done. Pure delight!
Katsudon, a donburi for the winners.
Katsudon is said to be a dish for the winners.
That is because, in Japanese, the verb katsu (勝つ), homonym of the dish’s katsu (カツ), means to win.
It is for this reason that, in Japan, the night before an important exam, students usually have katsudon for dinner. That way they will emerge victorious from it.
Now that we have a little one at home, I think this is a tradition we will have to start following.
How To Make A Perfect Katsudon
To get a good katsudon, it is important to make a good tonkatsu.
Traditionally, katsudon is prepared with tonkatsu, which is nothing more than a pork cutlet dipped in panko batter and deep-fried.
You can use whatever cut you like. That said, in my case, I usually opt for loin head with a thickness of about 1 cm.
Panko are Japanese breadcrumbs.
They are flakes and have a lighter texture than breadcrumbs.
Moreover, because it is prepared without using the edge of the breadcrumbs, its colour is lighter than that of Western breadcrumbs.
Thanks to this, panko breadcrumbs are less oily and more crunchy than western breadcrumbs.
Best of all, if you have sliced bread, you can make it at home in a couple of minutes. Here is the link to the recipe.
For a delicious tonkatsu, I recommend using an oil with a neutral flavour and a high smoke point. I usually opt for sunflower oil.
It is also important to use plenty of oil. If too little oil is used, the tonkatsu is in contact with the base of the pan. The base of the pan will be at a higher temperature than the oil and this causes the outside of the tonkatsu to cook too quickly and, most likely, you will end up with a raw inside.
To avoid this, just use a pan or wok with plenty of oil. At least 5-6 cm.
How To Make Katsudon
- 1/2 cup japanese rice
Para el Tonkatsu
- 1 pork cutlet , about 1 cm wide
- 1 egg
- oil, to fry
- Prepare the rice
The meat, tonkatsu
- Make a few small cuts where the meat meets the fat to prevent the meat from folding when frying.
- In a bowl, add the egg and beat it. Add some flour in a plate and some panko on the other.
- Coat the meat with flour. Dip it on the egg and finally coat it on panko. Make sure to press lightly so the panko adheres well to the meat.
- In a frying pan or wok, add the oil and heat it up up to 170 ºC. Add the meat and cook for a couple of minutes for each side.
- Remove from the oil and let it rest on a rack.
- Cut the onions into same size pieces.
- Cook the sauce at medium-high heat until the onion is cooked.
- Cut the meat (tonkatsu) into bite size pieces.
- Add an egg in a bowl and beat it lightly.
- When the onion is ready and the sauce has reduced add the meat add the egg, cover and leave to cook until the egg is 80% cooked
- Add the rice to a bowl and as soon as the egg is ready, top it.
- Enjoy this delicious katsudon!