Kushi Katsu Tanaka in Soka

Deep fried skewered streetfood for families in Saitama

By Sleiman Azizi    - 2 min read

Deep-fried skewered meats and vegetables are a snack delight in Japan. Originating in the early 20th century in Osaka, the nation's street food capital, kushi katsu as they are known in Japan have spread throughout the country.

Typically a small skewer of selected meats and/or vegetables, kushi katsu differs from its deep-friend cousin tempura by virtue of its batter - kushi katsu batter makes use of a stronger flour and features breadcrumbs. The ingredients are coated in this batter, deep-fried and served with a dipping sauce.

Common kushi katsu ingredients include pork, chicken, beef, and various seafoods. Vegetables include onion, eggplant, takenoko (bamboo shoots) and lotus roots. The list of ingredients really is up to the chef and his or her establishment. Cheese sticks are now quite common and so too are sausages and processed seafoods like kamaboko and chikuwa.

Kushi Katsu Tanaka is a famous chain store specialising in kushi katsu, and their stores can be found pretty much everywhere. The Soka store that we visited is non-smoking and family friendly - very much in keeping with the slowly rising tide of satisfying families first that is currently spreading throughout Japan.

Specials and discount deals change all the time but during our visit, a serving of ice cream and as well as takoyaki balls were free of charge for school age children. Recently, we've noticed an all-you-can-eat offer too...

Unlike the kushi katsu from Osaka, the skewered pieces in Tokyo tend to be larger, and so it was here in Kushi Katsu Tanaka. Prices range around a very reasonable 100, 120, 150 or 200 yen per skewer. Kushi Katsu Tanaka also serve non-skewered dishes like noodles, karaage fried chicken and tofu.

If you are ever in the area, drop by for some cheap and tasty street food in a restaurant.

Getting there

Take the Tobu Skytree Line to Soka Station, head out the West Exit, and turn right. Kushi Katsu Tanaka is less than a minute away on the left.

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Sleiman Azizi

Sleiman Azizi @sleiman.azizi

A Japanese Permanent Resident, I have over 300 published articles on Japan as well as 5 English language books written in a traditional Japanese style. I happen enjoy writing. Funny that...I'm also the Regional Partner for Tokyo, Japan's never ending capital, so if you've anything to say about Tokyo - or Japan in general - don't be shy and contact with me via sleiman.azizi@japantravel.com

Join the discussion

Elizabeth S a year ago
Most people imagine tempura when Japanese fried food is mentioned. Kushi katsu has just as much variety, and there is something for every taste. Great for families with children who like some things, and not others.
Sleiman Azizi Author a year ago
Simple stuff, really, but enjoyable.
Kim B a year ago
Yum! Kushikatsu is a favorite in our household and it's even better when the price is right!
Sleiman Azizi Author a year ago
It's an easy meal, right. We certainly splurged here...