Was Japanese curry made famous by the Chicken Katsu Curry at Wagamama? I don't know. I don't even know if it's a well known thing. But it definitely should be.
Not the chicken katsu one - although that one is nice, I'm honestly not a huge fan of Wagamama's food. I know I'm a snob when it comes to Japanese cuisine, but aren't we all when it comes to the food we grew up with?
E absolutely adores Japanese curry, but I don't make it too often since it's not the lightest of dishes. However, it's not too unhealthy either and so incredibly easy to make.
The key ingredient is the curry roux. You can get all kinds of brands in Asian food shops.
You can use any vegetables that take your fancy - I chopped up a couple of onions, several small carrots and a large aubergine.
As for the meat, I would recommend going with something other than chicken breast. My favourite is bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs for maximum flavour.
I de-bone them (keeping the bones for the curry), and E assisted in searing the meat to crisp up the skin (which I don't really like, but leave in for the flavour factor) and brown the other side. I don't think that this is a crucial step really, but simple enough if you don't mind the extra fuss.
(The random oven glove was to protect E's hand from the spitting oil. It looks very strange, I know.)
Next step? It's basically the final step. Throw in the veg in a large pot and fry in a little oil for a few minutes, add water (the box of the roux will tell you exactly how much, for this amount it was about 700ml), and add the roux. Bring to a boil, and then simmer covered for as long as you can stand.
I cook it for way longer (and on lower heat) than the box usually suggests - that way, the meat literally melts off the bones and everything is tender and amazing.
Usually, I would serve this with rice. Japanese rice if I have any on hand, but Jasmine rice cooked a little sticky works perfectly fine too.
This time, we thought we would try to go the healthy route and try out this trendy phenomenon called cauliflower "rice".
I was too lazy to set up the food processor, so I hand grated a head of cauliflower and microwaved the lot for a few minutes until fluffy and warm.
I know it's not the prettiest of foods, but I can't let vanity get in the way of such deliciousness.
The cauliflower rice went down surprisingly well - even E, who normally hates healthifying things, didn't disapprove of the idea. I quite liked it myself, though obviously, it's no match for actual rice. It's just a good alternative if you don't want to be waddling off to bed with quite as big a food baby (and it justified us having seconds of the curry, of course).
It's comfort food at its most familiar, most warming and most of all, easiest.