I fell in love with Pork Katsu curry on my first trip to Japan and have been cooking it at home ever since. There aren't many situations in life that cannot be improved with a tender piece of pork coated in perfectly crisp fried panko crumbs with a creamy umami curry sauce. To me it's the ultimate comfort food. Thankfully it's easy to make too.
After years of making the curry roux from scratch, I discovered that my supermarket stocked curry cubes. This has been a real game-changer for me. They make yummy curry sauce and save a lot of time. I used to save Katsu curry for the weekend, but the ease of curry cubes has meant that it is feasible on a busy weekday too.
🛒 Key ingredients and possible alternatives
- Rice - I always eat my Pork Katsu Curry with sushi rice. You could also serve with noodles or just a simple side salad or cauliflower rice if you want to lighten things up.
- Curry cubes - I used to make my own curry roux but then I discovered Golden Curry cubes. They make yummy curry sauce and save a lot of time so I have never gone back. You should be able to find curry roux in your local supermarket or Asian grocery store. You can also make your own.
- Other sauce ingredients - Onion, carrot and honey add texture and sweetness.
- Pork loin steaks - you can also make this dish with chicken or tofu.
- Seasoned Flour - this adds flavour to the pork before you cook it. I like to add a variety of seasonings including smoked paprika, mustard powder, onion powder, garlic powder, white pepper and (most importantly) salt. If you don't have all these don't worry, you could omit a couple and it will still taste good.
- Egg - acts as the glue that holds the katsu crumbs in place.
- Panko breadcrumbs - these should be available in your local supermarket. If not, an Asian grocery store will stock them. You can also use normal breadcrumbs. The pork katsu won't be as crispy but it will still taste really good.
🧑🍳 How to make Pork Katsu Curry
1. Make the sauce
Place a saucepan on a medium to high heat, add oil and sauté the onions for a few minutes until they are translucent. Add the carrot slices and cook for a few more minutes. Pour in the water and bring to boil, then reduce to a simmer for 10 minutes. Add the curry cubes and honey and stir until the sauce thickens. Then reduce the pan to its lowest heat while you prepare the rest of the dish.
2. Prep the pork
Cut the fat off the pork loin steaks and tenderise them by gently banging them with a meat tenderiser.
3. Coat the pork
You will now need 3 bowls. Add flour to one, beat the egg in another and add the panko breadcrumbs to the remaining bowl. Season the flour with paprika, mustard powder, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and white pepper, and mix until all ingredients are incorporated.
First, coat each piece of pork in flour, then dunk into the beaten egg and finish by placing them into the panko breadcrumbs until covered.
Place a frying pan on a very high heat and fill with 0.5cm or ¼ inch oil. Test to see if the oil is hot enough by putting one panko crumb into the pan. If it sizzles up you can start cooking the pork, but if it sinks you need to wait a little longer. Add the panko-coated pork to the pan when the oil is hot and fry for two minutes. Then use tongs to safely turn the pork over and cook for two minutes on the other side. Remove the pork loin steaks from the pan with tongs when they are done and place them on a wooden board. Let them rest for a few minutes while you plate up the rice. Then cut the pork into slices, place it on top of the rice, and pour the katsu sauce on top.
🔪 Tools and Equipment
- Sharp knife - for cutting the onions, carrots and slicing the cooked pork before serving.
- Saucepan - for making the sauce.
- Frying pan - for frying the katsu.
- 3 bowls - for the flour, egg and panko breadcrumbs. Try to use bowls with a wide base where you can easily fit the pork steaks.
- Tongs - for frying the katsu pork safely.
- Wooden board - for resting and slicing the cooked katsu fillets.
👍 Top tips for perfect Pork Katsu Curry
- Season the flour - most katsu curry recipes won't suggest that you season the flour like this one does but adding smoked paprika, salt, white pepper, mustard powder, garlic powder and onion powder to the flour really adds to the flavour of the crispy fried pork. Don't worry if you are missing a couple of these, but be sure to season the flour with the ingredients you have. I promise that you will not regret it.
- Get the oil hot before you add the pork - you need the oil to be red hot to get panko-coated pork deliciously crispy. It's best to drop one panko crumb into the pan to test the oil. If the oil is hot enough the crumb will sizzle up. If the crumb sinks then you need to wait a little longer before you cook the pork.
- Use tongs to cook the pork - they enable you to handle the pork safely while you fry it.
The crispy panko-breaded pork tastes best when eaten fresh, but you can store the cooked dish in the fridge for up to 3 days. It's best to store the pork and curry sauce separately so the breaded pork does not go soggy.
Yes you can. Freeze the pork and sauce separately. Defrost the sauce in the refrigerator and reheat on the stove or in the microwave. Cook the breaded pork from frozen in the oven or airfryer.
Katsu curry is traditionally served with rice, but you can also eat it with noodles. I often eat it with a mooli salad.
Pork katsu curry is traditionally made with the loin or tenderloin.