4.107 Tonkatsu with Shredded Cabbage in Ketchup & Mayo

Cycle 4 – Item 107

22 (Mon) April 2013

Tonkatsu with Shredded Cabbage in Ketchup & Mayo


by me

at home

-Oksu, Seongdong, Seoul, Republic of Korea-

with the Family, Nanny 8

Korean-Swedish Culinary Exchange (5) (see also KSCX)

Unlike previous installments of this project, I did not cook a Swedish dish, and GK did not cook a Korean dish.  Rather we both cooked tonkatsu, a Japanese dish, with a Koreanish twist.  It was inspired by a recent discussion with GK about how to Koreanize tonkatsu (see comments at 4.084 Taste Test: A vs Z).


Beyond the tonkatsu itself, one of my suggestions was to serve a side dish of shredded white cabbage topped with ketchup and mayo.  It’s a salad of sorts that can often be found accompanying cheap/mainstream/localized foreign dishes, like tonkatsu (see generally 1.302 Tonkatsu).  The crunchy texture can be nice, especially alongside something deep-fried.  But in terms of taste, it’s kinda blech, no surprise.  I don’t know anybody who really enjoys it, not me; then again, I don’t know anybody who refuses to eat it, not me.


[All italicized comments below are in GK’s own words, with minor typographical edits.]

Let’s start with the sides.

As a salad I used white cabbage together with Thousand Island dressing.  Seemed good enough.

I also made some other sides, including kimchi (home made by me, not so sour because of the fact that I made it just the week before), oi namul (오이나물), myeolchi bokkeum (멸치볶음), gamcha jorim (감자조림).

The actual tonkatsu turned out pretty well.  They tasted pretty much as I remember from Korea.

Since I didn’t have any ready sauce, I made it from scratch according to a recipe I found online.  It consisted of ketchup, worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, sugar, mustard and garlic powder.  The recipe also called for mirin, but I didn’t have any.  It turned out good enough without it.


Comments on GK’s spread:

  • I’ve never thought about serving potatoes with tonkatsu, but it makes perfect sense, especially when braised in soy sauce – good call!  I’m wondering if GK felt compelled to do it, because Europeans can’t seem to eat pork without potatoes.
  • I love that the pork packages have Swedish flags on the labels.  Talk about national pride!
  • The combination of the panko and the apparent thickness of the meat probably made the tonkatsu look more Japanese than Korean in character, although of course the side dishes transformed the overall spread into a completely Korean event; incidentally, tonkatsu sauce is so different from place to place, like BBQ sauce, that GK’s sounds about as good as it gets.


These are screen-shot comments from the prior site. If you wish to leave a new comment, please do so in the live comment section below.

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