Japan: Katsu Karē

Restaurant: Gombei
City: San Jose, CA

Yesterday, I had lunch at Gombei in San Jose Japantown. Gombei has four locations (Menlo Park, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, and San Jose); the first store opened is at SJ Japantown. Gombei is well known for their curry dishes, and fried tofu dish.

katsu kare

Katsu karē – curry sauce with chicken cutlet, served over rice. There were also some potatoes, onion, and carrots within the curry sauce. The red bit next to the rice was pickled radish (fukujinzuke). The curry sauce is on the thicker and sweeter side, contrary to Indian curry.

Katsu karē (カツカレー) is tonkatsu, a Japanese breaded and fried pork cutlet with curry sauce. Katsu kari is a popular meal in japan. It is typically served on Japanese short grained rice. (Closet Cooking)

Here’s some info about Japanese curry, from Wikipedia:

Curry (カレー karē) is one of the most popular dishes in Japan. It is commonly served in three main forms: curry rice (カレーライス karē raisu), karē udon (thick noodles) and karē-pan. Curry rice is most commonly referred to simply as ‘curry’ (カレー karē).

A wide variety of vegetables and meats are used to make Japanese curry. The basic vegetables are onions, carrots, and potatoes. For the meat, beef, pork, and chicken are the most popular. Katsu-karē is a breaded deep-fried pork cutlet with curry sauce.

Curry was introduced to Japan during the Meiji era (1868–1912) by the British, at a time when India was under their administration. The dish became popular and available for purchase in supermarkets and restaurants in the late 1960s. It has been adapted since its introduction to Japan, and is so widely consumed that it can be called a national dish.

Here’s some more info about katsu karē, from Japan Guide:

The usual ingredients added in Japanese curry include potatoes, carrots, onions and meat. The sauce itself is usually made from curry powder or roux, which is a of a blend of basic Indian spices. The typical Japanese curry is thicker in texture and tastes sweeter but less spicy than its Indian counterpart.

The meat of choice is more often pork or beef, differing from Indian curry in which chicken or mutton is usually used. It has been observed that pork is the most popular meat for curry in eastern Japan while beef is more common in western Japan.

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