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JAPAN: HUNTING DOWN TONKATSU

27 Feb

So apparently there is this “awesome Tonkatsu place” around the backstreets of Asakusa temple.

At least, that’s what Mum and Dad were declaring :P They’d been there a few months ago when they were in Japan, and swore up and down it was amazing. And so, we traipsed all around looking for it.. until I got bored and tired ;) We asked some random people and they pointed at a little shop tucked away in a back street. It wasn’t the place that my parents had been to, but they served Tonkatsu and so that’s where we decided to eat.

The place is TINY.. with 2 tables where you sit on tatami mats (Japanese style) on the floor, 2 tables regular style, and a counter with maybe 4-6 seats. We ordered quickly because 1) we were starving and 2) their menu only has about 10 items to choose from.

It was all immediately cooked up by the chef at the open kitchen next to our table, and arrived steaming hot to our table. Let me just say: THE OYSTERS WERE UNBELIEVABLY GOOD!! They were huge, the length of them almost the size of my palm (!). Plump and juicy and oh-so-fresh they didn’t have that fishy smell, they were briskly deepfried in Japanese breadcrumbs. The batter was crispy but not too thick, and it was heavenly biting into the crisp exterior with a *crunch* and sinking your teeth into the moist, fleshy oyster. Cripes it was good. I’m salivating just remembering it now…

The Tonkatsu curry and Tonkatsu set meal both featured deep-fried breaded pork. It was OK. Not nearly as good as the fast-food Curry House place we went to, surprisingly. The batter was great and the pork was thick, but it had a lot of fatty bits in it that we spat out. I much prefer perfectly lean, tender pork.

I thoroughly enjoyed the totally simple spaghetti, which was a tumble of beautifully cooked al dente spaghetti, and some simple shreds of onion and bacon/ham. It was topped with a small sprinkle of Parmesan and herbs and tossed in a tomato-based sauce. Exceedingly basic, but it was delicious. The sauce was slightly tangy with a hint of spice, and it was a welcome break from all the Japanese food we’d been having. Funnily (and not so surprisingly), the Japanese even do Italian food better than many other countries ;)

Sadly, they don’t have desserts. Most traditional Japanese places don’t serve dessert. In fact, I don’t often see Japanese eat dessert. Odd! But perhaps that’s the secret as to why they’re all so thin….

At the little tucked-away tonkatsu place

The counter and open-kitchen

Orgasmic breaded oysters…. OMG….

Tonkatsu curry

Tonkatsu set

Spaghetti

Sake = awesome

Me being a good little food blogger

Our grocery store-bought desserts! That ChocoPie ice cream = amazing

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Posted by on 27 February 2010 (Sat) in Holidays, Japan, Uncategorized

 

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