As I promised yesterday, here is one of my favorite ways to use a beautiful loaf of Japanese Milk Bread. This pork katsu sandwich ticks all the boxes I’m looking for in a meal. The bread is soft and super fluffy. The pork is hot and crispy. The cabbage is cool and slightly vinegary. Then the dijon mustard adds a little spicy kick, and you top it all off with the complex flavor of Katsu sauce and it is pretty much sandwich heaven. I have to make 2 sandwiches each for my teenage boys when I make these, because one isn’t quite enough. If you don’t have time or interest in making milk bread, you can also use super soft store white bread, like wonderbread for this.
These sandwiches are typically served with the crusts removed, which is all about the texture contrast between the bread and the crispy pork. You can leave the crust on if you don’t want to do this, but I recommend trying it crust less first. I know this seems wasteful, but nothing gets waste here. We either eat the crusts as a snack (they are delicious) or I give them to my spoiled dog and chickens, which makes their day. Here are some random pics of my chickens because they are cute:
I use thin sliced boneless pork chops for this, because it saves time in pounding them out thinly to tenderize. I still tenderize them a little, but it is a lot less work than pounding a regular boneless porkchop down to the 1/4-1/2 inch thick chops you want for this.
Katsu sauce is critical for these sandwiches. It is a kind of fruity, sour, savory, everything sauce. I don’t know, it is so hard to describe! You will love it though, it is delicious. I buy this one and I think it is one of the best. Most Asian markets carry it, but I often just order on amazon. I usually order a 2 pack because when I make these my family of 5 uses a lot of a bottle.
Pork Katsu Sandwich:
- 5-6 thin sliced boneless pork chops
- 1-2 loaves of Japanese Milk Bread or Wonderbread, sliced and crusts removed
- 2 eggs whisked
- 1/2 cup flour
- 2 cups panko flakes
- 1/2 green cabbage thinly sliced
- 2 tsp white vinegar (or more to taste)
- 1 tbsp mayo
- dijon mustard
- katsu sauce
- salt and pepper to taste
- oil for frying
Prep your pork chops:
First get your pork ready to go. Trim any fat from the edges of the pork chops, then place them into a large ziploc bag one and a time and pound them with a meat tenderizer. I have an old school one like this:
You just want to get them a bit tenderized and about 1/4-1/2 inch thick. Don’t skip this step as it makes biting into the sandwich completely different than a non tenderized piece of pork. I tried skipping this one, and no one was happy including me! Sprinkle the chops with decent amount of salt and pepper and set aside.
Prep your cabbage and bread:
Cut the crusts off your bread as I mentioned above. Set your cute bread squares aside. Thinly cut your cabbage either by hand or with a mandolin like I show in my Leek Orzo with Fried Eggs post. Add the vinegar and some salt and the mayo. Mix and taste and adjust your seasoning. Set aside.
Bread and fry the pork chops:
Set up your oil in a wide pot (I use my deep frying pan for this) with a deep fry thermometer. If you don’t have one of those, it is soooo useful when deep frying and really changed how crispy and perfectly fried my food comes out. I have a multipurpose digital thermometer with a clip, but an inexpensive one like this works just fine.
Set up your ingredients for breading. Place the flour onto a plate, and put your eggs into a shallow bowl. Put your panko into another shallow dish. Line a cookie sheet with foil to place your breaded pork on. Line another sheet with paper towels to drain the cooked pork. Dip each pork chop in the flour first, shaking off any excess. Then dip into the egg, then into the panko. Press the panko onto the pork so it is fully covered and place on the foil lined sheet. Heat your oil 350. Fry a few pieces of pork at a time, for about 4-5 minutes until dark golden brown and cooked through. Drain on paper towels and fry the next batch. Sprinkle hot pork with salt.
Build your Pork Katsu Sandwich:
Spread some dijon onto both slices of bread. Place your pork patty onto one half and top with cabbage. Drizzle on some katsu sauce. Top with other bread slice, cut in half, and serve with more katsu sauce on the side.
This sandwich is so delicious! I hope you will try it.
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