In cooking, you have to be resourceful, especially if preparing exotic and foreign dishes. While it is true that globalization has pulled every country “closer,” some ingredients are still hard to find particularly if you’d like to taste what people on the other side of the world is having. In this recipe, the ingredients for the sauces I used can be found in every household pantry. You don’t need to go to Japan or an Asian store, although authentic sauces are still the best. When the required ingredient is unavailable, you just need to improvise.
4 pcs. boneless chicken breast
1 cup of all-purpose flour
1 cup Japanese bread crumbs
1 head of cabbage
½ cup of vegetable oil for frying
3 tbsp. tomato ketchup
2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. sugar
Japanese mayonnaise substitute (cabbage dressing)
4 tbsp. regular mayonnaise
2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 tbsp. rice vinegar (or cane vinegar)
1. Remove and discard skin of chicken breast. Using a sharp knife, butterfly each chicken breast (carefully slice chicken breasts horizontally but not cutting all the way through). Spread each meat on a tray and season with salt and pepper on each side. Set aside.
2. Heat oil in a nonstick pan. While you wait, prepare dredging station. You will need three wide and shallow bowls. Beat two eggs in one and pour in flour and brad crumbs to the other two.
3. Remember to use the proper dredging technique. Use one hand for the wet ingredient and the other for the dry. Dip chicken breast first in flour, shake excess then dip in eggs before finally coating it with the bread crumbs. Fry each chicken breast until golden brown. Rest on paper towels or wire racks before slicing.
4. Meanwhile, chop cabbage into very thin strips. You can also use a food processor or mandolin for this procedure.
5. For the sauces, mix all ingredients of each kind and set aside.
6. Slice each chicken breast into strips before serving. Put the tonkatsu sauce on the side while you can drizzle the mayonnaise on the cabbage or dress the vegetable completely. Eat with a bowl of white rice. Enjoy!