Japanese curry rice takes a little time and work to make, but it’s well worth the effort. We usually make a double batch (a double-batch serves 8), so there’s some leftover for a couple of lunches or even another dinner (just freeze what you had made). It’s that good.
There are a couple of different ways to make this, but they’re essentially the same, with the veggies being the major difference. It is really flavorful, but not spicy-hot.
What you need for the roux:
- 3T butter or duck fat
- about ¼-cup flour
- 2T garam masala
- 2 pinches of cayenne pepper (the more you use, the spicier the curry)
- Ground black pepper
- 1T plain ketchup
- 1T tonkatsu or Worcestershire sauce
What you need for the curry:
- 2t vegetable oil
- 2 large onions, sliced
- About 2 pounds of boneless chicken thighs
- 2 large carrots, cut into chunks
- About 4 cups of water
- 2 potatoes (Yukon gold are best)
- 1 pureed apple (optional, but recommended)
- Whole smashed garlic cloves (optional)
- Ginger (optional)
- Salt, to taste
- 1t garam masala
- ½-cup frozen peas
- Rice or Japanese/Chinese noodles
What to do (for the roux)
- Melt the butter in a nonstick pan and add the flour and garam masala; combine until it becomes a paste.
- Add the pepper and stir it in to the roux.
- Add the ketchup and tonkatsu sauce (or Worcestershire sauce) and stir in to the roux.
- Set aside until needed.
What to do (for the curry):
Heat the oil in a large pan (I use cast-iron) and cook the onions at medium-low heat until golden.
Turn up burner temperature and brown the chicken.
Now for the fun part: add water and carrots; bring to a boil.
De-foam, if needed, reduce heat a bit and add the garam masala, apple (if you’re using it), potatoes and salt. Simmer for about 30 minutes, until carrots and potatoes are cooked.
Now you’re almost done—take about 1.5-2 cups of the liquid from the curry and add it to the roux that you’ve made.
Mix liquid and roux until all the roux has diluted back into the liquid and add back in to your pot with the chicken, carrots, etc.—if you skip this step the final curry will be lumpy.
Mix well and add the peas. Keep on medium-low heat until everything is cooked through.
Serve over rice (or noodles).