E1, E2, EC3, EC4, W1, and WC1
Rice, fried chicken, katsu curry sauce. Three simple components that make up one of the most loved items from a Japanese menu, and a dish that can be found in almost all Japanese casual dining establishments.
My pick of the lot in our great capital, for a reliably tasty and cheap chicken katsu curry, is from small London-based chain Japanese Canteen; their whole menu has yet to let me down.
They’re generous with the fried meat pieces, with more than a single serving of rice, and the pickles they add on top are a little addictive. You can eat in at most of their venues if you wish, and service is generally fast and efficient.
There's the option of brown rice instead of white if you’re on a health kick. And they have a load of donburi rice bowls too (up to £6.95), which you could upgrade to bento box status. They'll put it into a box, and furnish it with those tasty bento extras, like salad, sesame bean shoots, and miso soup. That would take you a little over our budget, but it would be a very big meal.
The Korean fried chicken is also a good option if you’re after a punch of heat. If minimal fuss, quick service and good Japanese food is what you seek, Japanese Canteen should be on your list. Note: the menu can vary slightly from location to location, so do check their website for more details.
Words and photography | Ed Tan
They have several venues in postcodes E1, E2, EC3, EC4, W1, and WC1. See here for the exact addresses.
These vary for the different locations. See here for their opening hours.
Website | thejapanesecanteen.co.uk
Last updated | 6th Feb 2017