I am completely homesick!!!
Not homesick for my home town in Michigan, but for my second home- JAPAN. This week please take a moment to reflect and send some positive energies to those that are still suffering in Japan after the one year anniversary of the tragic tsunami and Fukushima nuclear incident. Japan you are still in our thoughts and prayers.
We lived in Yokohama, Japan for a period of time and these were some of the happiest and bizzare moments of my life. We lived in Nakaodi and it has some of the narrowest roads in the whole world.
There are streets in which you wonder is this a pedestrian walkway or and actual road? The roads are so narrow that you have to rotate your side view mirrors in to avoid them from from hitting the cement walls around the turns. I drove in Japan once, for about 100 metres, then promptly got out of the car, handed the keys to my hubby and never took our car out of the underground batcave carpark again. From that day forward, we named our car, “The Costco Car” as we only used this car to go on big grocery hauls to and from this bulk foods store. So now my life revolved around trains and walking everywhere.
Walking is a lovely way to get to know a new city. It gives you a different perspective on the feel for the life of the people. Unlike driving in a car, you can get the chance to look up and see the many stores and restaurants in the levels above the ground level. There is one restaurant that comes to mind but I do not know if it is there any more. However, after you get off the Ishikawacho Eki (train station) you turn right, go through a back alley and there is little 3 table mom and pop restaurant. Great home cooked Japanese Fare and the best Pork Tonkatsu I have ever had. Hanging on the side of the restaurant all neat and orderly is everyone’s Kasa’s (umbrellas). I do not even know if this restaurant has a sign in English but once you see the umbrellas you know you are there. Japan is an amazing place, even after this devastation it just keeps on going and everyone just keep putting one foot in front of the other…
While living in Japan, I used to participate in cooking classes and enjoyed them immensely. However, now my favorite source for all Japanese cooking is my dear friend and fellow blogger Nami-san http://justonecookbook.com/blog. Please visit her blog and you will be amazed at her attention to detail and her delicious Japanese dishes. Without further delay, here is my version of pork tonkatsu that my teenage boys just love.
Pork Tonkatsu トンカツ
Recipe adapted from my Japanese Sensei
Serves 4 adults or 2 hungry teenagers
- 4 boneless pork chops
- 2 large egg, beaten
- 1/2 – 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1/2 head cabbage, finely shredded and soaked in cold water
- salt and pepper
- flour for coating
- vegetable oil for frying
- Tonkatsu sauce (my teenagers like Bulldog brand but you can make your own homemade sauce by adding the following ingredients together; 1/2 cup worchestire sauce, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup soy sauce, 1/4 cup ketchup, 1 tablespoon french yellow mustard, 1/2 teaspoon ground all spice and place in a little pot and heat over medium heat for about 10-15 minutes, cool and serve)
- cooked white rice- short grain
Step 2: Salt and pepper pork chops
Step 3: Dip pork chops in egg and then into the flour mixture, remove excess flour.
Step 4: Dip the floured pork chop back into the egg and then into the panko bread crumbs until well coated. Set aside
Step 5: Heat a large skillet with about 1/2 inch of oil until hot. Lay 1 or 2 cutlets in the hot oil. Fry until golden brown, about 5 to 7 minutes, turning them once or twice. Drain the cutlets on paper towels and cut the pork into bite-size strips. (Alternatively you can cut down the fat: Heat about 1- 2 tablespoons oil in frying pan and cook on medium heat on each side until golden brown.)
Step 6: Drain cabbage and dry. (traditionally the cabbage is served plain on the side however if you wish you can drizzle a little sesame oil, rice vinegar, dash of sugar, dash of salt and some white pepper and mix it is super yummy)
Step 7: Serve pork tonkatsu with cabbage, rice and drizzled with tonkatsu sauce on top.