Our daughter doesn’t like a chunk of meat in general. She says it’s too chewy and dry, and prefers soft minced meat such as hamburger steak. It had always been like that since she was a toddler, until one day, she ate Tonkatsu (Ton (Pork) + Katsu (Cutlet) = Deep-fried Japanese pork cutlet). About a year ago I took her to one of the most popular Tonkatsu restaurants in Japan (the famous Maisen) where she ate a slice of this freshly fried, juicy, tender, tasty pork Tonkatsu with their rich, sweet & savory shiny brown sauce. It must have been an eye opener for her, because ever since then she became a big Tonkatsu fan.
Last night I made it for dinner, and she kept taking a slice after another, to the point where I had to tell her to stop eating any more. She indulgently poured the Tonkatsu sauce (store bought – they have a good selection in the supermarket) over the Tonkatsu slices and ate it with great pleasure.
I don’t know if she knows it yet; I certainly won’t encourage her to make a connection that the pork is pig, who she adores through her favorite Olivia and Peppa Pig.
– Pork filet (preferably with a bit of fat)
– Egg (beaten)
– Bread crumbs (in Japan we use what is called “Pan-Ko (パン粉)“, which is rough bread crumbs rather than the fine powdery ones you see in the western countries)
– Oil (I mixed salad oil and olive oil yesterday – I do NOT recommend sesame oil for Tonkatsu. It’d be too heavy)
- Make some incisions between fat & flesh – this way it prevents the filet to warp once being placed in hot oil
- Sift a large spoonful of flour over the pork filet and cover it entirely
- Dip the floured pork filet into the beaten egg
- In a tray, pour a cup of bread crumbs, place the egged pork fillet on top and cover the crumbs over the fillet
- Pour the oil in a small frying pan, heat up the oil (drop a small bread crumb in it for testing – it’s ready when it immediately comes back up on the surface)
- Deep-fry it in medium heat until the flesh becomes harder (kind of like someone’s bicep muscles, rather than my soft tricep)
- Once ready, take it out of the pan and place it on top of a sheet of kitchen paper placed on a metal net (so that it wouldn’t get soggy from the heat)
- Eat with the delicious Tonkatsu sauce