I looked up the word ‘Katsu’ when I was writing this recipe, and of course it turns out I’ve been using this Japanese word incorrectly. Katsu just means ‘cutlet’, and it’s used to describe the way the meat is presented in this dish. We tend to use it to describe the whole dish of crunchy chicken (in this case) with Basmati rice, and a smooth Curry sauce.
I can’t think of a better name for this – so Chicken Katsu Curry it shall remain!
I start by making the Curry sauce – then I move onto the Chicken and rice element of this easy dinner.
Miss Smarty-Pants get ahead advice: 😉
- Make Curry sauce up to 2 days ahead. Cover and chill until needed. Reheat gently until piping hot.
- Butterfly, dip and coat the chicken breasts up to 12 hours before you need them. Lay them on a sheet of baking parchment on a baking tray, cover and chill until ready to cook.
- See NOTES below.
- Frying pan
- Food processor
- 3 small bowls – I use shallow pasta bowls.
- Saucepan to cook the rice.
- Medium saucepan to heat the curry sauce
- Baking Tray -lined with a sheet of baking parchment
- Optional : a small separate bowl for each person to hold the rice and Curry sauce.
For the Curry Sauce: This quantity will make you a really good-sized pot of Curry sauce, certainly enough to feed 5-6 people (you can chill or freeze leftovers for another day)
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
- 50g grated fresh Ginger
- 1 diced carrot
- 1 teaspoon of Garam Masala
- 1 teaspoon of Curry powder – I use mild curry powder
- 1 teaspoon of ground Turmeric
- 3 teaspoons of plain flour
- 2 tablespoons of Mango Chutney
- 500mls boiling water
- About half a block of Coconut Cream – grated, or half a tin of Full Fat Coconut Milk.
- fresh coriander, to serve.
- One Chicken breast per person – butterflied and batted down until it’s the same thickness right through.
- 1-2 tablespoons of Plain flour
- 2 large eggs – lightly beaten
- 200g of Panko breadcrumbs – bought or make your own. https://eatingforireland.com/recipe/how-to-make-your-own-panko-breadcrumbs/ they couldn’t be easier.
- Oil, for shallow frying – I used Northern Ireland Rapeseed oil.
- Basmati Rice – for however many people you’ve got – 250g does 3-4 people approx.
- Salted boiling water
- Put the onion, garlic, ginger, carrot and spices into the food processor, and blend to a paste – I add some water to this, out of the 500mls in the recipe.
- Add a splash of oil to the frying pan and cook the curry blend on a medium heat for about 10 minutes.
- Add the flour and cook for another 5 minutes
- Add the Chutney, and the rest of the water.
- Simmer gently until it’s heated through and starts to thicken.
- Add the grated Coconut Cream or Coconut milk and adjust seasoning.
- Remove to a saucepan, reduce heat and cover. ** You can make the curry sauce ahead of time, chill it and just reheat it when needed**
- Wash and dry the frying pan
- Put the plain flour, beaten eggs, and breadcrumbs into the separate dishes.
- Dip the chicken breasts into the flour, then the egg, then the breadcrumbs – some people repeat the ‘egg and breadcrumb’ stage, but I didn’t bother.
- Heat the oven to 160ºFan and put the lined baking tray in to heat.
- Boil the water for the rice.
- Heat the oil in the frying pan.
- Cook each chicken breast until golden on each side.
- Put each one on the baking tray, then into the oven for 10 minutes or so, until all the chicken is cooked.
- While the chicken is having its 10 minutes in the oven, cook the rice.
- When it’s done (usually 10-12 minutes), drain and rinse with boiling water. If you have any grated Coconut Cream left over, add it to the rice.
- Taste for seasoning, and add salt as required. Keep warm
- Serve the rice in bowls, with some of the curry sauce poured over. Add a garnish of some finely chopped Coriander.
- Either leave the chicken in one piece, or slice it and serve on a plate, with the little bowl of separate curry and rice
- Being as bone idle as I am, I didn’t bother adding the last of the creamed coconut to the rice, and it was absolutely fine, so that will save you some time if you’re in a hurry.
- The Chicken in the Panko breadcrumbs is delicious.
- The sauce really needs the Creamed Coconut – it becomes beautifully sweet afterwards. You’d be surprised how much flavour even a little creamed Coconut will add, so don’t feel that you have to add exact amounts – taste it and see!
- Creamed Coconut comes in a block and keeps really well either in a cool cupboard or the fridge, so only use what you need and save the rest for the next time.
- This is the absolutely Lazy-Woman’s hint – If you have the Curry Sauce, and you’re in a flying hurry, use some of those ready-breaded chicken breasts from the supermarkets, and cook them as directed. But don’t altogether forget about the fresh chicken in the Panko breadcrumbs – it’s well worth that little extra effort!