Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Katsu Curry At Home


Who doesn't love a good katsu curry? Be it chicken or some kind of tasty deep fried vegetable alternative, it's a favourite for many, and something I often find myself daydreaming about. I recently had lunch with a Annie, a lovely Illustrator friend up in Leeds for an internship which I am soOoO jealous of, and we went to my favourite Japanese restaurant in Leeds, Little Tokyo. Although I was beyond satisfied with my veggie sushi set and pork gyozas (bloody amazing), her Katsu made my mouth water and I was determined to make my own ASAP. I'm a student, I can't justify eating out thaaat often..

This isn't a 30 minute recipe, I'm afraid. It was my first time making this so I know I dragged it out longer than necessary, plus I was taking photographs, but a few elements require prep work, so give yourself an hour and a half.. ish.

I don't really have a perfect recipe post layout sussed yet, so what I'm going to do is walk you through the photos with notes and pointers and such, then give you a more refined method and ingredients list at the bottom. Sounds good? Okay.


Whisk up your egg and blitz your bread in a blender. I grilled the crumbs off just to get rid of most of the moisture.



Beat your chicken breasts until they're flatter and wider, so will cook quicker and get more crispy coating! So gross juices don't go flying everywhere, put them in freezer bags, remembering to squeeze out all the air before sealing. I didn't have a rolling pin so I used the edge of this chopping board.....lol. Cover the breasts fully in flour, then egg.



Add a little seasoning to the crumb mix, then cover the eggy chicken in the breadcrumbs, pushing them in so they're completely covered in a nice thick layer. Cover these and pop them in the fridge so the coating sticks well to the chicken.




Cover the sushi rice with water and rinse thoroughly, about 4/5 times. I didn't have a sieve... but it would be much easier with a sieve. The packet should give you instructions on how much water to add and cooking instructions. I covered mine well in a saucepan, brought it to the boil for 10 minutes with the lid on, then took it off the heat and let it sit for a further half an hour with the lid still on. Only lift the lid once you're ready to serve, stirring in a very small amount of sushi seasoning just for some added flavour. This will keep it hot!


Instead of searching around for Japanese style ingredients, you can find good alternatives in most small supermarkets.


That lumpy, green monster is in fact frozen spinach. I think I'm incapable of just leaving curry sauces as they are. I have a NEED to add extra stuffs. I can't help that I'm so wild and free and such.


I didn't really know how to approach the chickpeas, but it worked perfectly in the end. Rinse them thoroughly, then cover them in water on a low heat to simmer away for about 30-40 minutes. I cooked a whole tin but only about half went in the curry.



The curry sauce! What is life without some onion, eh? Don't, I don't want to think about it. Dice it up fairly small and fry it off for 5 minutes before adding the chickpeas. Stir them around for 2 minutes, then add the curry paste (or sauce), spinach and hot water. With this particular curry paste, I used 4 cubes out of 6 because it apparently serves 5, HA. 

That can simmer away for as long as need be, just remember to keep stirring and don't let it reduce too much as you want it to be thick and lovely, but not burnt! 


Cut up the chicken all fancy like they do in Wagamamas. This will also let you make sure it's fully cooked through! 35 minutes on 180 should do it, but even so, we don't want any poisonings, do we.



Ingredients

For the breaded chicken:
2 large chicken breasts 
1 large egg
Plain flour
A few slices of bread, blitzed up (I used rye as that's all I had)
Seasoning (I used garlic powder, onion salt and pepper)

For the curry:
Curry paste/sauce (go for the mysterious "curry" curry. Not anything specific like chicken tikka, unless you absolutely insist on chicken tikka. It's yellow)
-EDIT: 1tbs Curry powder, a similar amount of flour, stock water and a dash of soy sauce makes a perfect curry sauce!!
1 medium onion
Half a can of chickpeas (not dried)
A few handfuls of spinach (fresh or frozen)
Olive/rapeseed/coconut oil (Please stay away from sunflower oil. Article)

Other:
Sushi rice or your normal favourite
Sushi rice vinegar, if you want
Greens!! I chose mixed leaves. Green beans, broccoli or peas would be nice!



Method

Blend up your bread slices into crumbs and grill them for a few minutes to get rid of most of the moisture. Mix in your seasoning, to taste. Whisk up your egg, pouring it onto a plate with raised edges, same with the bread crumbs, and cover a chopping board in flour. 
Put your chicken breasts in freezer bags then flatten them with a rolling pin. Cover the chicken in flour, then egg, then press in the breadcrumbs so they're covered in a thick layer. Leave in the fridge for half an hour+ so the coating sticks.

Rinse your chickpeas then place in a saucepan, covering them with water, to simmer away for at least half an hour. In the mean time rinse the sushi rice and according to the cooking instructions on the box, place on the boil. Mine needed to be brought to the boil for 10 minutes, with the lid on, then left to sit, without taking the lid off, until serving. The rice can be slightly cooler as the curry will heat it up. Pre heat the oven to 180/200.

When the chickpeas are ready to come off, drizzle olive oil into a baking tray, place on the breaded chicken and drizzle a little more on top. Place into the pre heated oven. Dice the onion into fairly small pieces then drain the chickpeas and store them in a bowl. Fry the onions in oil for 5 or so minutes before adding the chickpeas for a further 2-3, then add your curry paste and hot water/curry sauce and spinach. Allow the sauce to thicken on a low heat, stirring periodically until the chicken is ready. The chicken should be turned about 10 minutes before taking out.

To serve, take the lid off the rice and stir in some sushi seasoning (completely optional), then wet/oil your hands and gather a ball of sticky rice onto each plate. This can get messy but it looks pretty, ha! Slice up the chicken, then pour over the curry so it covers half the chicken and half the rice, keeping both from becoming soggy. Add a few greens and voila!! 


I do hope you liked the recipe! I wouldn't trust myself to make the curry sauce from scratch, but with all the additions and home made breaded chicken (bloody nice by the way!) I think it still counts as a recipe, right? If you do make it, let me know how it goes! :)



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8 comments

  1. That looks incredible! Definitely going to try this when I'm back at uni :)

    Kate xo // www.beautybabbles.com

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  2. Saving this recipe immediately. I'd love to get more into cooking but have so many goals at the moment that I think I'm going to make this a main one for next year - it's not stopped me looking at recipes though, and this looks perfect! :-)

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  3. I love your blog and shop, you are such an inspirational designer. Could you do a post on how you personalised your blog headings and add lettering to photos, I really want to get into 'typography' (don't know what its called) so it would be so helpful. My blog http://thoughtsbyliv.blogspot.co.uk/

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    Replies
    1. Oh thank you very much! I can do, however I use a lot of things that I wouldn't expect a beginner to invest in right away, such as photoshop and an iPad pro tablet. I may do it anyway just so those who are interested get some info :) x

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  4. This is not only a minor bit of work. This is beyond all that. This is greatness.
    rubyusers

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