Mom Food is the Best Food: Katsudon, or Fried Pork Chops with Eggs

I finally got to go back to work on Wednesday and after being off and trapped in my house for four days.  Upon reentering the land of the living, I was reminded of a few things:

1)   Work pants really are significantly less comfortable than sweat pants.

2)  Human interaction is vital to a sane existence.

3)  Food will not be magically prepared when I get home.

Point #3 is why I’ve been slacking on the posting. Apologies, but I promise these next few dishes are worth the wait.

While I admittedly made up the Sweet Red Bean Cookie recipe (meaning it’s not quite authentic), the rest of Japan’s dishes come from the pen of Mama Tomato and were said to be Tomato’s favorites. And we all know that all Mamas know best.

The best way I can describe this is a fried pork chop sandwiched between rice and a sort-of omelet.  Intriguing…here we go.

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Without further ado…

Katsudon

Serves 4

For the pork chops:

4 thin cut pork chops, poke some holes with folk to soften the meat.

2 eggs, lightly beaten with a TBSP of milk or water

About 1 cup flour, enough to cover the 4 pork chops

About 1 cup panko bread crumbs, enough to cover the 4 pork chops

1/2″ vegetable oil to cover the bottom of a deep frying pan

1 full sheet of newspaper, folded 4x and topped with a paper towel on the top to drain the chops

For the eggs:

4 eggs, lightly beaten until combined

2 TB vegetable oil

1 medium size brown onion, cut into fourth, and then into ¼ inch thin strips

2 medium size fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, and sliced into ¼ inch thin strips

1 stock of fresh spinach (about 6 stems); or 1 green onion, cut to about 2″ in length

¾ cup water

2 TB soy sauce

1 TB sake (cooking wine)

1 TB mirin

2 tsp dashinomoto

1 TB katakuriko or corn starch, mixed with 1 TB water

4 cups rice, cooked

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Directions

First, make the chops

1.  Pour the vegetable oil in a deep pan with about 1/2″ and heat.

2.  Bread the pork chops:  Season each chop with salt and pepper.  First, flour the pork chops, one at a time, and remove excess flour.  Dip each floured chop into the beaten eggs.  Finally, lay it in the panko crumbs and cover the pork with crumbs on both sides.  Repeat this with all 4 chops.

3.  With medium/high heat, fry two chops at a time until the bread crumbs are just right, brown in color (because the chops are thin cut, frying should take less than 2 minutes each side).  Put the fried chops on the paper towel with newspaper underneath to catch the excess dripping oil.

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Note:  You can check the temperature of oil by dipping a wooden chop stick.  If it sizzles, the oil ready.  Or, drop few bread crumbs in.  If they immediately fry and come to surface, the oil is hot and ready to fry.

Make the eggs:

1.  In a medium size frying pan, put 2 TB vegetable oil and heat in a medium heat.  Place the onion and shiitake in and fry them until they’re soft.  Pour the water, say sauce, sake, mirin, and dashinomoto in the onion mixture.  When it boils, add the liquid corn starch and stir.  When it thickens, add the spinach and pour the mixed eggs from the edge of a pan to end at the center.

2.  Cover it with lid and lower the heat.  When the eggs are half cooked, turn the heat off.

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To serve

Fill 4 donburi (large bowls like ramen-bowl, cereal bowl, large soup bowl) with rice to about ¾ of a bowl.  Cut the chops to about 3/4” strips and place one in each bowl.  By now the egg topping should be done.  Remove the lid and section it to four pieces.  Place each section to each of the bowls by covering only 1/3 of the chop, the rest topping the rice.

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 Intriguing and DELICIOUS

 


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