Menchi Katsu is deep-fried ground meat patties with chopped onions and seasonings. It is a popular western food from butcher shops and delis in Japan just like Korokke. Menchi Katsu tastes like a hybrid of Hamburger Steak and Tonkatsu. Inside is juicy hamburger, and outside is crunchy Panko crust. Even though Menchi Katsu is categorized as a “B class” cheap dish, freshly fried Menchi Katsu is as good as expensive steaks! … or at least we think so.
The name “Menchi” is said to come from “minced meat” (ground meat). The dish was started at some Yoshokuya, a western style Japanese restaurant, in Tokyo in the Meiji era (over 100 years ago). As it became popular in Tokyo, it spread to Kansai (western Japan). There people sometimes call it Minchi Katsu. Today one of the best places to buy Menchi Katsu is butcher shops. They usually have a small deep-frying set-up in the corner of the shop and sell it as they fry. Menchi Katsu and Korokke are often placed next to each other. You can tell which one is which from the shape: Korokke is oval and Menchi Katsu is round.
The flavor of Menchi Katsu from a butcher shop may be hard to recreate because nobody has a big fryer full of hot lard in a home kitchen. Some may want to put chopped cabbage in the patties for crunchy texture and others a little mashed potatoes for softness. You could be creative to make good ones at home!
Here we made a very basic, simple, and of course tasty version of Menchi Katsu. For the sauce, we used Tonkatsu Sauce, but you can use Worcestershire sauce or ketchup if you prefer.
This dish is pretty easy to make, and the ingredients are simple and easy to get. On top of that, it’s cheap to make, too. Now you have no excuse to pass on it!
- 1 lb ground beef and pork (450g)
- 1 brown onion, chopped
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup Panko(bread crumbs)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- egg, beaten
- Panko(bread crumbs)
- oil for deep frying
- Tonkatsu sauce
- cabbage, shredded
- Put ground meat, chopped onion, egg, 1/4 cup Panko, salt, pepper, and nutmeg in a large bowl. Knead very well until very sticky. Divide into 8 round pieces and flatten.
- Coat with flour, then egg, and then Panko (bread crumbs). Let rest in the fridge for 15-30 minutes.
- Heat deep frying oil to 350-375F, and fry the patties for 3-4 minutes each side.
- Serve with shredded cabbage and Tonkatsu sauce.