KING DEDEDE - Gourmet Chicken Katsu Kaiser
Updated: Jul 19, 2021
Food is the name of the game when it comes to Dream Land’s rotund ruler, the gluttonous King Dedede! This dastardly despot displayed his despicable disposition to Dream Land's denizens by stealing their food in the original Kirby's Dream Land, kicking off his ongoing role as Kirby's nemesis. The two arch-rivals often compete over food, such as in the iconic Gourmet Race from Kirby Super Star, a three-course scramble to see who can feast on the most food.
In the spirit of King Dedede, I wanted to make a dish that requires using a hammer to create. This initially led me to schnitzel, an Austrian dish consisting of meat pounded flat using a kitchen mallet or meat tenderizer. Eventually I decided to switch to tonkatsu, a similar dish of Japanese origin, in reference to Dedede’s feudal Japanese flair (have you ever noticed that he wears a kimono and obi?) I opted for chicken rather than the typical pork, in keeping with Dedede’s avian look.
Katsu is traditionally served as-is, but it also works fantastic in a sandwich. This royal sandwich is served on a Kaiser bun, a bread roll of Austrian origin which appropriately means “King” or “Emperor”!
4 skinless boneless chicken thighs
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 tbsp garlic powder
Salt and pepper
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
1 cup oil, for frying
2 cups shredded red cabbage
1 medium carrot, julienned
2 scallions, thinly sliced
Chopped cilantro (optional)
3 tbsp peanut oil
3 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp ketchup
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp oyster sauce
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp grated ginger
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp chili flakes (optional)
1 tbsp sesame seeds
Salt and pepper
4 Kaiser Rolls
Toss red cabbage, carrot, and scallions together in a medium bowl.
In a small bowl, whisk together peanut and sesame oil, ketchup, Worcestershire, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, oyster sauce, garlic, ginger, brown sugar, sesame seeds, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Add chili flakes if you want some heat.
Pour dressing into slaw and toss until well coated. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Heat one inch of oil in a deep fryer or large sauté pan, taking care not to overheat and burn the oil.
Line up three bowls for battering the chicken: in one bowl, sift together flour and garlic powder. In a second bowl, beat the eggs (and if you want the katsu spicy, mix in some sriracha or your favourite hot sauce). Finally, place the panko breadcrumbs in a third bowl.
Pound each chicken thigh with a meat tenderizer/mallet until thin and flat. Season with salt and pepper. Dredge with the flour mixture, coating completely.
Dip dredged chicken into the egg mixture and then press into panko breadcrumbs until completed coated. Cook in hot oil, 2-3 at a time, for a few minutes on each side until golden brown and crispy.
Halve the Kaiser rolls and lightly toast. Spread a layer of mayonnaise on the bottom bun.
Add katsu cutlets and top with slaw.