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Top 5 favorite Hawaii plate lunch foods


Chicken Katsu

Chicken katsu is a longtime staple of the Hawaii plate lunch. A take on the popular Japanese restaurant dish tonkatsu (or pork cutlet), chicken katsu is essentially a chicken cutlet taken to more crunchy extremes. The recipe is easy enough: Deboned chicken thighs, butterflied, battered in flour, egg and panko (Japanese bread crumbs) then fried to a crisp, golden brown. Why panko instead of standard breadcrumbs? Traditional Western-style breadcrumbs tend to get soggy as the cutlets cool. The more flakier panko breading keeps the cutlet crust crunchy long after frying, making chicken katsu a perfect entrée for takeout plate lunches. Chicken katsu is also seriously delicious. A small cup of tonkatsu sauce (think of it as a sweeter, thicker take on traditional Worcestershire sauce) is always served on the side for dipping. Use it.

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