Pork & prawn donburi

Donburi means simply "rice bowl dish". The variations are endless, any meat, fish or vegetables are welcome. Add a soft-poached egg on top for true decadence - the yolk adds to the richness of the sauce. I also like to add a kick by sprinkling on liberal amounts of spice mix shichimi togarashi.


  • 8 green king prawns
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 boneless, rindless pork cutlets,
  • About 1 1/2cm thick steamed rice, to serve
  • 1 cup finely shredded white cabbage
  • Lemon wedges, to serve

  • For the sauce
  • 2 1/2 tsp castor sugar
  • 5 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp tomato sauce
  • 3 tsp oyster sauce


For the sauce, dissolve sugar in the Worcestershire sauce. Whisk together with remaining ingredients.

Shell and devein prawns, leaving tails intact. Prepare three bowls for crumbing – flour, eggs and breadcrumbs.

Season the prawns, then dust them in flour. Shake off excess, then dip in egg. Return to the flour, then dip in egg again before finishing with a coating of breadcrumbs.

Make a few cuts into the pork between the meat and fat, but not too deep. This will prevent the cutlet from curling up when frying. Tenderise pork with a meat mallet, then re-form to its original shape.

Season pork, then dust in flour. Shake off excess, dip in egg mix, then coat well in panko breadcrumbs.

Heat oil in a wok or deep saucepan to 180°C. Check temperature by dropping in a breadcrumb: if it rises to the surface right after it’s dropped, it’s ready.

Gently place the crumbed prawns in oil and deep-fry for about 2-3 minutes, until golden brown. Drain on paper towel. Scoop out any breadcrumbs to keep the oil clean and allow oil to return to 180°C before continuing to fry.

Fry the crumbed pork until golden and crispy, about 6-8 minutes, turning once or twice during cooking. Drain on paper towel.

Cut the fried pork into 1 – 1.5cm slices.

To serve: Fill the base of four bowls with freshly steamed rice. Place an equal amount of pork to one side of each bowl. On the other side, place a handful of shredded cabbage, arrange prawns on top and add a wedge of lemon. Spoon the sauce over the pork and serve immediately.

NOTES: Want something to drink?
In the world of riesling, Ernie Loosen is one of the greats: his vineyard in Germany's Mosel wine region grows some of the world's finest riesling grapes. The 2011 Dr Loosen Wehlener Sonnenuhr Kabinett Riesling has notes of freshly cut green apples, ripe limes, hints of green olives and crushed slate minerals, all tied together with bracing acidity and just a lick of sugar on the end palate.

First published in the Good Weekend.

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