While I mentioned in my last post how much great eating we did in japan, I probably didn’t do justice in describing our passion for Pork Tonkatsu. We visited a famous Tonkatsu restaurant in Tokyo called Meisen, and just was amazed by the Tonkatsu there. We probably had the dish four or five more times during brief trip to Japan. Tonkatsu is a breaded pork dish usually made from the loin of the pig. What makes tonkatsu in Japan so good (particular the one at Meisen), is the type of pork they use. In Japan, the prized pork for tonkatsu are these Kurobata heritage breeds. Their meat is fattier and more flavorful then our traditional United States variety of pork (which by comparison tastes a little bland and dry, crazy I know). The masters at Meisen produced a rich tonkatsu that was shockingly light, but juicy and full of flavor.
Any how, with my mother law visiting a couple of weekends ago, I decided to give pork tonkatsu a try. Here is my humble rendition
- 1.5- 2lbs boneless pork loin chops (fattier the better), about 3 – 4 thick steaks, pounded flat into about 1″ thickness
- Flour for dredging
- 2 eggs, beaten
- Panko for dredging
- vegetable oil for frying
- salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil to 375 or so in cast iron skillet (or deep fry if you prefer). Assemble a fry station. Place Panko, flour and beaten eggs into separate flat shallow containers for dredging. Using plastic wrap, cover individual pork loin chops and pound flat with a rolling pin or meat mallet (we use smooth rock that we keep in our kitchen, don’t look at me it’s my wife, it’s a Colombian thing) until they are about 1″ thick. The Tonkatsu should be relatively thick, so don’t pound too thin. Season the beaten eggs with salt and pepper. Also season the flour with a bit of salt. Dredge individual steaks in Flour, then egg, then Bread crumb. Fry the pork until golden brown (flip once if using cast iron skillet).
Tonkatsu is usually served with rice, Japanese pickles, shredded cabbage (I just seasoned lightly with salt and pepper, a little olive oil and lime juice), and tonkatsu sauce. I used this recipe form Saveur.