I remember 6.5 years ago when I just moved to Minnesota, so shocked by the subzero looonngggg winter. Being homesick. A brand new housewife with almost-zero experience in cooking. Then few months later, I got pregnant with our first baby (our now-5.5 year-old girl) and I was craving for Japanese food badly!!It’s like an obsession particularly with sashimi. Why on earth would I be craving for sashimi while being pregnant! I could only see them on the menu but I couldn’t have them because they are raw. It’s a pure torture!! Luckily, though, sashimi wasn’t the only thing I was craving for. I was also craving for deep-fried stuff! (Is that considered lucky? geez!) At least a pregnant woman is allowed to eat deep-fried stuff okay! One of the things I learned to cook in my early culinary days was this tonkatsu (Japanese-style pork cutlet) from Harumi Kurihara’s Everyday Harumi cookbook. I LOOVVEEE this piece of meat so much (which I later on also got addicted to schnitzel). It’s so easy to make even for such an unexperienced housewife like me. I love eating deep-fried food, but honestly, do not like the process of deep-frying ! The first few times I made tonkatsu, I deep fried them. But later on I found that, pan-frying them also turned out really good.
I love making avocado rose and though this are not exactly avocado rose, but those slices of avocado on top of the tonkatsu is pretty appealing to the eyes too, and I think they are pretty easy to make too. Kewpie mayo is another thing that I love so much. This Japanese style mayo is thinner but with much more depth of flavor. If you can’t find kewpie mayo (usually available at Asian grocery store), you can use regular mayo.
For baking/ kueh making: I highly encourage to weigh ingredients with a digital kitchen scale instead of using measuring cups as they are not very accurate especially when it comes to recipe that requires precision.GRAMS TO CUPS CONVERSION (UNSIFTED)
- 3 ripe avocados - peeled and pitted
- 2 Tbsp kewpie mayo - Japanese-style
- Fish roe for garnishing - optional
- 2 of 5 oz boneless pork shoulder - each about 1-inch thick
- Salt and pepper to season
- All-purpose flour - for coating
- 1 medium egg - beaten
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup of cooking oil
- Make a few small cuts around the edges of each pork steak so they will cook without shrinking.Place the meat in between two plastic wrapper and use a meat pounder or back of knife to flatten them. Take care not to break the meat. Season each piece with salt and pepper
- Cover each pieces of meat in flour, shake off any excess and then dip in beaten egg and coat with breadcrumbs
- Preheat about 1/2 cup of oil in a large pan or skillet. Pan fry each piece of met on medium to high heat until they are cooked through and golden brown. When cooked, drain on a rack or some paper towels to remove and excess oil. When they are cool enough to handle, dice them into bite-size. Mix the chicken with kewpie mayo. Set aside
- Slice the avocado thinly. Scoop about 1 Tbsp of the meat mayo mixture and place on a clean plate/chopping board and roughly shape it into a ball with a help of spoon or your clean fingers (don't have to be exactly round). Place about 6-7 slices of the avocado on top of the meat. Place the plastic wrap on top and wrap it up and it will help you to shape it into round balls (refer to the short clip below)
- Garnish with some fish roe (optional). Best served on the same day, as the avocado may gradually turn black if left for too long. They can be served cold or room temperature. Repeat with the rest of the meat and avocado
These goes so well with a side of rice. You can even mix in some cooked sushi rice into the tonkatsu mixture if you want to 😉 I think I would be happy to open up my lunch box and see these tonkatsu avocado rolls inside. Wouldn’t you ?