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Bowl of sweet potato katsu curry served with rice, salad and sesame seeds
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Aubergine & Sweet Potato Katsu Curry

This aubergine and sweet potato katsu curry is easy to make and so delicious! Featuring a silky smooth and velvety sauce it tastes just the same as the Wagamama’s dish. It’s also great for making ahead and can be made gluten-free.
Course Dinner
Cuisine Japanese
Diet Vegan
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 700kcal
Author Jess & Dan

Ingredients

For the curry sauce:

  • 1 onion - roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic - chopped
  • 1 tbsp ginger - peeled and chopped
  • 4 tbsp curry powder
  • 2.5 tsp soy sauce – or tamari
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 200 ml coconut milk
  • 500 ml vegetable stock

For the katsu:

  • 350 g sweet potato – peeled and cut into ~1 cm slices
  • 500 g aubergine – cut into ~1 cm slices
  • 150 g panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 300 ml water
  • 250 ml oil

Instructions

  • In a wok, pour a splash of oil, and then add in the chopped onion and fry over medium-high heat until soft.
    1 onion
  • Next, add in the garlic and ginger and continue cooking for one minute on medium-high heat.
    2 cloves garlic, 1 tbsp ginger
  • Pop in spices, and mix well to ensure all of the onion, garlic and ginger is well coated.
    1 tsp turmeric powder, 4 tbsp curry powder
  • Sprinkle in the flour and again, stir well.
    2 tbsp plain flour
  • Little by little, start adding in the stock, like making a roux, until all of the stock has been poured in and there are no lumps.
    500 ml vegetable stock
  • Pour in all of the coconut milk. Bring up to a simmer, add in the sugar and soy sauce (or tamari). Simmer for 5 minutes, until it has thickened up. Take the sauce off the heat and then set aside.
    2.5 tsp soy sauce, 1 tsp brown sugar, 200 ml coconut milk
  • In a separate bowl, mix the plain flour with the water until smooth. It should create a thick and gloopy mixture that has a smooth consistency. Place the panko breadcrumbs into a separate bowl. And then get a plate ready to place the vegetables on once they have been dunked.
    1 cup plain flour, 300 ml water
  • Dredge each piece of aubergine and sweet potato into the flour mix, then into the panko breadcrumbs. Set aside onto the plate. Work fast so the mix doesn’t fall off the vegetables. As the flour mix is quite thick, it shouldn’t fall off the vegetables but it’s still worth trying to go quick if you can.
    350 g sweet potato, 150 g panko breadcrumbs, 500 g aubergine
  • Heat up a frying pan with a 0.5cm layer of oil in the bottom (around 250ml). Use a single piece of panko to check if the oil is hot enough, once it is bubbling away in the pan, the oil is hot enough.
    250 ml oil
  • Fry each piece of sweet potato and aubergine on each side for around 1-2 minutes, until golden. As each piece of vegetable is done, place onto a plate that has been lined with kitchen paper, so the excess oil drips off.
  • Make sure the sauce is hot, it may need reheating on the stove top for a few minutes. Then sieve it to remove the garlic, ginger and onion (optionally) and serve with short grain white rice, salad, pink pickled onions and cabbage.

Notes

  • To create the silkiest sauce, it’s best to sieve out the onions, garlic and ginger. Even though this is how Wagamama make their katsu curry, it does create waste. The flavour is also more subtle when the sauce is sieved. It’s up to you whether you sieve it or serve as it is. Alternatively, if you have a blender, it can be blended to create a smoother sauce, but again, this is preference and not necessary.
  • For a gluten-free version, switch the panko breadcrumbs and plain flour for gluten-free versions, and use tamari instead of soy sauce.
  • Variations – try using firm tofu in place of some or all of the sweet potato and aubergine, or try subbing pumpkin or butternut squash.
  • Both the sauce and the vegetable pieces can be made a few hours ahead. Cover both the katsu sauce and the fried vegetable discs and leave them on the counter. Re-heat the sweet potato and aubergine on a tray in the oven for 15 minutes on gas mark 4 (177°C). We have tested this and the vegetables crisp back up really well in the oven. 
  • The katsu sauce can be frozen, just make sure to defrost and then reheat until piping hot on the stove. We don’t recommend freezing the shallow fried sweet potatoes and aubergine slices.
  • It's hard to work out exact calories when shallow frying. When cooking, it looked like half of the oil was leftover in the pan when we were finished. So therefore, I've worked out the calories for this dish using half the amount of frying oil listed. 

Nutrition

Calories: 700kcal | Carbohydrates: 87g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 10g | Monounsaturated Fat: 21g | Trans Fat: 1g | Sodium: 544mg | Potassium: 860mg | Fiber: 12g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 12502IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 154mg | Iron: 6mg