‘Ton’ means pork and ‘katsu’ means cutlet. Pork is the traditional meat for this but you can make chicken, salmon or prawns in the same way. If you like it with curry, check out my Japanese curry recipe!
1 pork fillet
2 eggs, beaten
1 handful flour or cornstarch
2 handfuls panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1 cabbage (Chinese cabbage or the acorn-shaped one – if you can’t find this variety, you could use salad leaves or iceberg lettuce)
Sunflower oil for frying
Nori (dried seaweed) for the eyebrows
Tonkatsu sauce (buy ready made or…) –
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp ketchup
1. Chop the cabbage very finely and set aside.
2. Cut the pork fillet into thick steaks (see pic) and BASH WITH A MEAT TENDERISER. If you don’t have a meat basher, you can use the the back of a BIG KITCHEN KNIFE or a ROLLING PIN.
3. Put the flour and beaten egg into shallow dishes and put the breadcrumbs onto a plate. Place them side by side and have a spare plate at the end of the line. Coat the pork into the flour, then dip in egg. Finally coat with plenty of breadcrumbs and put them on the last plate. Repeat until all the pork pieces are covered in breadcrumbs and ready for frying.
4. Put a deep pan of oil on high heat and wait until very hot. Check the oil is hot enough by throwing in a pinch of flour or breadcrumbs – it should sizzle ferociously. Plop in the pork cutlets – 2-3 at a time (more than this and they will take longer to cook and come out less crispy). Fry for 2 or 3 mins, flipping over halfway. When golden, transfer to a wire rack or put the katsu on some kitchen paper to drain the oil.
5. Serve with the cabbage. Drizzle sauce of your choice over the top and enjoy!
6. If you have any leftovers, you can make tonkatsu sandwiches! Put the katsu in a couple of pieces of bread with a dollop of mayo, some tonkatsu sauce and crispy iceberg lettuce. YUM!