Kiddie Chicken Katsu

I’m an adventurous eater and love trying new things.  I grew up on very traditional North-East of England food, where pasta dishes were a little exotic and Chinese Takeaway was  daring as it got.  That being said, my parents succeeded in raising 6 of the least fussy eaters you can imagine who have all embraced food from our various travels and life experiences.

My own children have grown up with a mixture of the British classics plus my own discoveries and loves.  Some they love (we all love anything tex-mex and Italian), others are less popular (stir fries are always a little reluctantly received, and once both of my girls cried when I served up Shepherd’s pie).

I’m a massive fan of Thai, sushi and Japanese food but this is an area where the enthusiasm seems to stop at me in my little family.  I particularly love eating at Wagamama’s, but have never managed to persuade my husband and girls to come and eat there with me.  This, therefore, was my gateway attempt to introduce a new dish.  Wagamama’s have a lovely looking kid’s menu featuring something similar from which I took my inspiration.

Katsu is a good mixture of the familiar (crunchy chicken, rice and veggies) and the new but not too new (a variation on curry sauce).  I read a few recipes for the sauce and with a bit of trial and error, came up with the version here which is both tasty and mild for younger palettes.  The first time I made this I added way too much curry powder, and so balanced with some yogurt, and so the picture here shows a much lighter sauce that you will get from following the recipe!! (However, if your young ones do find it spicy still, a few dollops of plain yogurt is a lifesaver).

The reception on this was much better than I had dared to hope.  My eldest loved it and polished it all off (apart from the stir fried broccoli – standard for her!), while my youngest loved the chicken but was more tentative about the sauce, but asked if we could have it again soon.

Wagamama’s – here we come!

S ♥

IMG_2185

Ingredients

Serves 4

For the chicken:

  • 4 x small chicken breasts (around 100g each)
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 100g dried breadcrumbs
  • Salt and pepper
  • Oil, such as coconut or olive, for frying

For the sauce:

  • 1 tbsp sesame or coconut oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • A thumb sized piece of ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped into small chunks
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped into small chunks
  • 2 heaped tsp mild curry powder
  • 1 heaped tbsp plain flour
  • 1 chicken stock cube, made up with 1/4 pint boiling water
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • Salt and pepper

To serve:

  • Steamed rice or noodles
  • Veggies of your choice cooked or raw – such as stir fried greens, chopped carrot, cucumber or tomatoes, raw peppers, fresh spinach – anything you fancy!

Method

  1. Start by preparing the curry sauce.  Heat the oil in a pan and over a medium heat, add the onions, garlic and ginger and fry for a few minutes until the onion has softened slightly
  2. Add the carrots and celery and stir fry for a minute or 2
  3. Add the flour and curry powder and stir well until none of the white flour can be seen
  4. Add the chicken stock and stir through, then turn up the heat and bubble for about 5 minutes until the celery and carrots have softened.  Add more water if the liquid is looking too thick
  5. Add the soy sauce and honey and season with salt and pepper.  If you like a smooth sauce, blend with a hand blender to the desired consistency.  Keep warm on a low heat while preparing the chicken
  6. Next, prepare the chicken.  Have the flour, eggs and breadcrumbs to hand in separate bowls.  Place the chicken breasts inside a large ziplock bag or between couple of sheets of greaseproof paper, and use a rolling-pin to bash until flattened
  7. Season with salt and pepper then dip each piece into the flour, egg then breadcrumbs to give a crispy coating on each side
  8. Heat a large frying or grill pan with a few glugs of oil, then fry the chicken on a high heat for 3-4 minutes on each side, until thoroughly cooked through.  You can check this by cutting through the thickest part of the chicken and ensuring the flesh is white and firm
  9. Slice the chicken into strips and serve on top of the rice or noodles and vegetables
  10. Finish with the sauce – either drizled over the top of the chicken, or on the side for dunking (or, if you’re a katsu addict, both!)

 

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