tonkatsu salad rice

So much for a week of Irish food…

Let’s see. I did a pork roast, made a few loaves of brown bread, had smoked salmon, drank pots and pots of tea and ate chocolate biscuits. Chocolate biscuits are considered Irish no? I have this thing where I can’t go without Asian food for more than a few days. I mean, I could but… for instance, I could be in Italy enjoying the most amazing seafood or pastas everyday on holiday, but as soon as I get back home, the first meal has to be something Korean. In a strange way, the stinky kimchi, soups, stews, grilled meats, marinated vegetables and white rice cleanse my palate. WHAT?!?! Am I the only one who’s like this? It’s kind of weird if you think about it because I was born and raised here in the states and although I did grow up with Korean food, I probably ate just as much American food, if not more. I wonder why I don’t crave burgers as soon as I land? Anyway, while I attempted to go the whole week making/eating at least one Irish meal a day, we ended up eating out a bit more than usual and when I did cook, I made foods from all over the place. My themed weeks haven’t been very consistent this time around. I mean to call it Irish week and only make two dishes…? tsk tsk tsk. Must do better next time!

Funny thing, now that ‘Irish week’ is over, I’m planning to make Irish-style ribs and colcannon, shepherd’s pie and fish and chips. HAHA. My mom requested the ribs for our lunch date next week, I promised my best friend shepherd’s pie and we just cleaned and refilled our fryer with fresh oil and wanted to treat ourselves with homemade chips (fries)! Kevin, Can I dedicate this week to you instead? HAHA.

So what do we have here? If you remember the pork roast dinner from the other day, I cut the loin in half. I roasted one half and saved the other half. I didn’t feel like making another roast so soon but I needed to use the pork before it went off. I had two easy options in mind – Japanese pork curry or Tonkatsu. I had ingredients for both. I decided I’d make Tonkatsu as a treat, as we have curry quite often in this house!

Tonkatsu looks and sounds fancy, but it’s so simple to prepare. Tonkatsu is fried panko breaded pork cutlets. Ingredients you need are pork cutlets, some flour, salt, pepper, eggs, panko breadcrumbs and oil for frying. I sliced the pork loin into four equal pieces. I was working with a big pork loin meant for roasting so I had to cut them, but you can find pre-portioned pork loin cutlets in the supermarket. Take your meat tenderizer and pound each cutlet into thinner pieces of meat. By flattening the meat into thin cutlets you shorten the cook time and create more surface area for the crispy breading.

tonkatsu pork

Place flour in a shallow bowl or pan. Add a good pinch of sea salt and black pepper to create a seasoned flour for dredging.

dredging flour

Beat two eggs in a shallow bowl or pan.

two eggs

Place panko breadcrumbs in another shallow bowl or pan.

panko breadcrumbs

Now you are ready to bread your pork cutlets. In an assembly line fashion, dredge pork in flour, coat in egg mixture, then coat in panko breadcrumbs. Repeat these steps for each pork cutlet until they are all breaded.

panko breaded

I set my deep fryer to 350F. Cook the breaded cutlets for about 3-4 minutes or until they are golden brown and float to the top. You can also use a deep frying pan or pot on the stovetop. If you decide to fry them on the stovetop, make sure the oil is hot enough before dropping the pork. To test how hot the oil is, I sprinkle in some panko flakes. If they float to the top and sizzle, it’s hot enough to start cooking your meat.

fried pork cutlet

Pour some Bull-Dog Tonkatsu Sauce on top of the crispy panko crusted pork. YUM! I also shave or thinly slice white cabbage (you can find this in the Asian market) and make a coleslaw type salad by drizzling over some Japanese Kewpie mayonnaise and Ketchup. This salad goes really well with Tonkatsu.

cabbage slaw

This Tonkatsu dinner was literally a last minute decision, but it was so easy to make, looked fancypants and most importantly was super satisfying. Give this dish a try and let me know how it turns out in the comment section below!

On a side note, I want to try something out during the month of September. I will be keeping an online journal of everything I eat, everyday. SCARY! I want to keep myself accountable and what better way than to make public my fatty ways! I told a friend this idea, and she thought I was keeping a journal to show off how much I can eat. HAHA Girl!!! Are you crazy?!?! 😉 Hopefully, by doing this I can adopt a healthier diet and be better with portion control. Wish me luck and tune in to see how I do! 😀

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