My sister is Japanese, and when I told her I made Katsudon she mentioned that was her favorite. I’m so happy because now I can make Katsudon for her!
I’m going to Tokyo in March 2020 to participate in the marathon. I say “participate” rather than “run” because I’m totally incapable of running the whole thing! I am yearning to learn more about Japanese cuisine to prepare for this trip short term. Long term, I want to be able to impress my sister. 🙂
Where Does The Name “Katsudon” Come From And What Is It?
Katsudon is a very popular Japanese dish. It gets its name from “donburi” which means rice bowl dish, and “tonkatsu” which means pork cutlet.
So katsudon is a thin pork cutlet, breaded and fried. Later it will be added to a broth which is comprised of mirin, soy sauce, sugar, and dashi or chicken stock. Onions are cooked in this broth, and then the tonkatsu is placed on top of the onions. To finish, beaten egg is added around the tonkatsu and onions and cooked until set.
The delicious tonkatsu and egg and onion mixture is then placed on top of steaming rice in a bowl, and voila! You have your incredible katsudon!
Katsudon in Japanese Culture
So I discovered that this donburi was actually created by a Japanese high school student in the 1920’s. It is considered a kind of comfort food in Japan, and it has become tradition for students to eat it the night before major exams, as the word “katsu” also means “to win.” 🙂
Apparently there is also a connection between katsudon and Japanese police films. It seems that people believe that suspects will confess once they’ve eaten katsudon, so there are scenes in films discussing serving katsudon so that suspects will speak the truth. Check out this article called “Katsudon Confessions.” 🙂
Katuson is Delicious Comfort Food!
Katsudon is delicious, whether eating before an exam, during interrogation, or when you desire some serious comfort food! You might find it a little fiddly to make when it comes to breading the pork cutlet, but overall it’s super easy to create in your kitchen!
The broth is a mixture of salty and sweet flavors, and the fried pork cutlet just simply satisfies. And egg? Who doesn’t love egg as part of a meal!?
To conclude, I hope you will try this recipe for Japanese Pork Katsudon and Rice Bowl! Your whole family will love it!!
You may also be interested in how to prepare a Japanese pickle, which are a mainstay of Japanese meals! Please see this recipe for an easy Japanese Pickled Cucumber, which is super light and refreshing.
Shokuji o o tanoshimi kudasai!!
食事をお楽しみ下さい！(“Enjoy your food” in Japanese) 🙂
Japanese Katsudon and Rice Bowl
- 1/2 lb thin cut pork loin chops approximately 4 each
- 4 eggs 1 for breading the pork, 3 reserved
- 3 tbsp flour for dusting the cutlets
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- 1 cup panko I used Kikkoman
- 1/4 – 1/2 cup olive oil plus extra if needed
- 1 onion sliced thinly
- 3 ts mirin I used Aji-Mirin from Kikkoman
- 2 tbsp soy sauce I used Kikkoman
- 3/4 cup chicken broth
- 1 ts sugar
- 2 green onions sliced
- Add salt and pepper to both sides of your pork cutlets, and then dust lightly with flour.
- Lightly beat one egg. Place in one container, and place the cup of panko in a separate container. Dip each cutlet into the egg, allowing the excess to run off. Then dip both sides into the panko, covering both sides with the bread crumbs. Thinly slice your onion and set aside.
- Heat up your oil in a skillet (cast iron preferred) over medium heat. You can start with 1/4 cup of oil, and add additional if necessary. Once the oil is hot, place your cutlets into the skillet, and fry both sides for approximately 4-5 minutes each. You want the cutlets to be golden brown. Once cooked drain on paper towels.
- Scrape and remove the bits from your skillet (there is likely to be panko etc in the pan.
- Make your broth: mix the chicken broth, mirin, sugar, and soy sauce together. Add to the skillet (after bits removed) that is still set to a medium heat. Add your onions, and allow to simmer for a couple of minutes.
- In the meantime, take your drained pork cutlets, and slice them into pieces as in the image. Lightly beat the remaining 3 eggs.
- Add the sliced pork cutlets to the top of the onions that are simmering in the broth. Then add the lightly beaten eggs to the skillet, pouring around the cutlets. Turn the heat down to medium low, and continue to cook until the egg is set. You may want to cover the skillet to help it along.
- That's it! Serve over hot steaming rice in a bowl and garnish with green onions!