I didn't want a perfectly good meal to go to waste since I had all the fresh veggies hanging out in my fridge begging to be used, so I went ahead and made Katsu Donburi (also called Katsudon). Ever since I tasted the deliciousness of Donburi I knew I wanted to try making it with tonkatsu (breaded pork cutlet). I thought it would add a bit of variation in texture since the pork would be crispy. I was right. This was good. Really good. I even used a cheap cut of pork and I was worried it might be a little tough but I made it work and it was delicious.
Adapted from Kikuchan @ Allrecipes
3/4 lb boneless pork loin chops (or a cheap cut like pork shoulder)
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup flour
1 1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs (Japanese breadcrumbs...don't substitute. These breadcrumbs are amazing)
1 tbsp oil
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
1 cup chicken broth
6 shitake mushrooms, sliced into strips (regular button mushrooms work fine too)
1 carrot, julienned
2 tbsp white sugar
4 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup chopped green onions
5 eggs, beaten
2 cups cooked Japanese sticky rice (Calrose rice)
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. If using pork shoulder instead of pork loin chops, slice the pork steak in half horizontally to make it about 1/2 inch thick. This works better if it's still slightly frozen...if it's thawed you can put it in the freezer for 15 minutes to achieve the proper texture. Next cut the steak into cutlet size chunks. Cover the pieces of pork shoulder in plastic wrap and using a meat tenderizer, bash the meat until the piece is about 1/4 inch thick (this feels surprisingly good :) Make sure you flip it over and do the other side as well. Do this to all your pieces. (If your pork loin chops are thicker than 1/4 inch you may still want to do this step).
Now that your pieces of pork are cut and tenderized, season both sides with salt and pepper. In three separate bowls put flour in the first, beaten eggs in the second and panko breadcrumbs in the third. Dredge each piece of pork in flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs and place on a baking sheet with a baking rack on it. The panko breadcrumbs are amazing and make the coating extra crisp and light. Regular breadcrumbs just wouldn't be the same. Drizzle lightly with vegetable oil and place in the oven for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, flip the pork, drizzle the other side lightly with oil and then place back in the oven for another 10 minutes.
While the pork is baking, chop up all veggies. In a large frying pan set to medium-high heat saute the onion in oil for 3-5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and carrot and stir-fry a couple more minutes. Stir in the chicken broth, sugar, soy sauce and salt and let simmer for 3-5 minutes. Sprinkle in half of the green onions, stirring gently.
When pork comes out of the oven, cut into strips.
Turn the heat down to medium-low for the veggies and pour beaten eggs over the mixture, stirring a bit to incorporate the sauce and egg. Gently add the pork over the top and let simmer for about 10 minutes or until the eggs are cooked. You may need to add a lid for part of the cooking time to get the eggs to cook through on top.
To serve, scoop Japanese sticky rice into four bowls. Divide katsu donburi mixture into four, and place on top of rice. Garnish with a little more chopped green onion.
Click here for printable version of Katsu Donburi
We loved this variation of donburi. All the recipes I found online for it deep-fried or pan-fried the pork and I really liked that I took away some of the fat by baking it. The pork was still perfectly crisp and crunchy and the secret is the panko breadcrumbs and the rack on the baking sheet.