Our chefs took inspiration from the dish katsu when coming up with the recipe—think of katsu as Japan’s answer to schnitzel, featuring breaded meat with a savory–sweet sauce. They’ve adapted it slightly, using sour cream as extra insurance to make sure that the crumbs stick to the thin-cut pork. But that change makes a world of difference, guaranteeing a crispy, golden brown crust.
White Wine Vinegar
Place rice, ¾ cup water, and a pinch of salt in a small pot. Cover and bring to a boil, then lower heat and reduce to a gentle simmer. Cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Keep covered off heat until meal is ready.
Meanwhile, place panko on a plate. Pat pork dry with a paper towel, then season all over with salt and pepper. Brush evenly with sour cream. Dip pork one piece at a time into panko, flipping to coat and pressing to adhere.
Heat a thin layer of oil in a large pan over high heat (we used 2 TBSP; use a nonstick pan if you have one). Add pork to pan and cook until panko is golden brown and crisp, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate and set aside.
Wash and dry all produce. Slice cucumbers into thin rounds. Trim, then thinly slice scallions, keeping greens and whites separate. Toss together cucumbers, sesame oil, scallion whites, half the sesame seeds, 1 TBSP vinegar (we’ll use the rest later), 1 tsp sugar, and a large pinch of salt in a medium bowl.
Mix together hoisin sauce, garlic powder, ketchup, 2 tsp soy sauce (we sent more), and remaining vinegar in a small bowl, stirring until thoroughly combined.
Slice pork into strips. Divide rice and cucumbers between plates, then arrange pork on top of rice. Drizzle pork with sauce. Sprinkle with scallion greens and remaining sesame seeds.