Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Katsu sauce for your Katsu

What makes a Japanese katsu meal (deep-fried, breaded meat: traditionally in Japan it's pork or chicken) a "katsu meal" is the sauce. If you don't have the sauce-you're just having an ordinary meal of deep-fried, breaded meat.

This is my version of the sauce. It is a compilation of the different kinds of katsu sauce I have tasted (homemade, bottled or restaurant style)-all in one. Call it a flavor memory.

If you have not had katsu sauce before, please do not blame me or this recipe. You might as well get used first going to all the Japanese restaurants you can find in your area and order a katsu meal until you are ready to make your own.

One thing for sure, the flavor profile should be: tomato, spices, savory, sour (vinegar) and sweet.

Makes at least 1 ½ cups.


1/2 cup ketchup
3 T hoisin sauce
2 T Worcestershire sauce
2 T yellow mustard sauce
3 t rice vinegar
1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
2 T low sodium soy sauce
1 t powdered cloves
1 T brown sugar or granulated sugar
pinch of garlic powder or 1/8 t garlic paste
pinch cracked black pepper

 Note: if you use dry (powdered) yellow mustard, please also add 1/4 teaspoon of salt.


Throw in all the ingredients in a small sauce pan. Place saucepan on the stove and turn on medium heat. Mix and stir ingredients until just about simmering or just make the contents warm (115-120° F). It should be thick unless you want a runny katsu sauce which I actually frown upon but it is you who will use it so add rice vinegar and Worcestershire sauce-OR water. Remove from heat. Transfer in a small bowl or small dipping plates.

Use for your deep-fried, panko crusted chicken breast, pork, tofu or even white fish!