Food

Katsu sando is the new foodie trend taking over our Instagram feeds

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Susan Devaney
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A katsu sandu sandwich

Delicate, beautiful and delicious, katsu sandos are filling our Instagram feeds – as a new restaurant dedicated to the food art prepares to open in London

As good-looking as they are tasty, katsu sandos are having a moment right now. These precise and picturesque sandwiches have long been an institution in Japan, but they’re now clocking up serious capital on the world of Instagram and beyond, too.

In fact, they’re so revered as a foodie trend that TÓU, a restaurant dedicated entirely to the sando concept, will open in London this summer. 

Ana Gonçalves and Zijun Meng, the couple behind the launch, were convinced of the move after their Iberian katsu sando (below) served from the Tātā Eatery pop-up sparked a city-wide obsession

Sando lovers will now be able to sate their appetite with TÓU’s curation of “unique, flavoursome sandwiches” that’ll be conjured up at the mezzanine Loft space at Centre Point’s Arcade Food Theatre

The new restaurant aims to challenge perceptions of what people can expect between two slices of bread, with innovative taste combinations such as eggy tofu (scroll down to see).

To dig further into this glorious-looking sandwich craze, let’s first consider: what is the katsu sando exactly? 

Well, ‘katsu’ means cutlets and ‘sando’ is the Japanese abbreviation for sandwich – so it’s basically two pieces of Japanese milk bread wrapped around a meaty cutlet. It’s most often made from pork, but beef and chicken are sometimes also used, along with veggie versions in the form of halloumi, or Japanese omelette and katsu aubergine. 

Before being sandwiched, the cutlet is breaded in panko (Japanese bread crumbs) and fried, before being smothered in zingy tonkatsu sauce and topped off with some raw cabbage. Yum.

If you’re thinking the katsu sando sort of looks similar to a schnitzel, then you’d be right. The sandwich first appeared in restaurants and cafes way back in 1899, and it was indeed, inspired by the schnitzel. However, it is back on the foodie scene with a vengeance: indeed, you might say the katsu sando is the ultimate holy grail of any food-snapping Instagram user right now.

Whet your appetite for the culinary world’s latest hero with a look at people’s love of the delicious sandwich, below: 

If you can’t fine a katsu sando on the high street, then don’t despair: why not try making it yourself, instead? 

Ingredients:

• Eight slices of thinly slice pork

• Salt and crack black pepper

• Flour

• Beaten egg

• Bread crumbs

• Vegetable oil for frying

• Tonkatsu sauce

• Shredded cabbage

• Whole-grain mustard

• Four slices of bread 

Method:

1) Lay out your slices of and season with salt and pepper.

2) Lightly flour the pork, dip it in a beaten egg and the cover in breadcrumbs (while keeping one hand dry).

3) Fry the pork in a non-stick pan with vegetable oil until golden brown.

4) Remove from the oil and drain.

5) Spread one side of bread with butter and one side of two slices of bread with whole-grain mustard. Place cabbage on the bread and then place the pork on top. Cover them in sauce and then finish with one slice of bread on top. Slice off the crusts. 

Go on, give it a go.

Images: Konbi LA/ Instagram 

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Susan Devaney

Susan Devaney is a digital journalist for Stylist.co.uk, writing about fashion, beauty, travel, feminism, and everything else in-between.