Big Batch Japanese Curry Sauce

I have had a lifelong obsession with this delicious sauce. It was my must order item at Japanese restaurants and when we were allowed to go down the road to buy our own lunches in high school, I could afford a tub of steamed rice and curry sauce with vegetables for $5. I swear it got me through my final years. This popular sauce has spawned a plethora of instant mixtures already full of spices, flavours and thickeners so that all you need to do is add water and your own vegetables and meat. However these “curry roux” cubes are also full of preservatives. It’s pretty easy to make Japanese curry sauce from scratch, certainly a lot easier than Indian, Malaysian and Thai counterparts. Japanese curry is sweeter and milder in flavour than other Asian curries, and is also loved by small children. It is frequently on the menu for school lunches at Japanese primary schools and very popular with little ones. Serve with steamed rice and over crumbed pork or chicken.

This recipe makes about 16 servings of sauce to be served over and alongside cooked meat or seafood and rice.


4 carrots

4 onions

4 potatoes

1 thumb size piece ginger

4 cloves garlic

2 apples

2 tablespoons honey

2 litres chicken stock

3 tablespoons soy sauce

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

2 tablespoons tomato sauce

2 teaspoons salt

Curry Roux

6 tablespoons butter

8 tablespoons plain flour

2 tablespoons curry powder

2 tablespoons Garam Masala


  1. First, make the curry roux. In a small pot, add the butter and allow to melt over medium heat. When it starts to froth, add the flour and stir through to combine.
  2. Stir constantly until the mixture starts to bubble. This is a brown roux, so allow it to brown slightly and caramelise.
  3. Add the spices and stir to combine. Allow spices to heat and increase in potency before removing from heat, about 30-40 seconds. Pour into a heatproof container and allow to cool before placing in the fridge. Once cool you could also freeze the roux in an ice cube mould so you have easy to use curry roux in the future. Curry roux will keep for up to 4 months in the freezer, or one month in the fridge.
  4. To make the sauce, dice the onion and carrot, and finely chop the ginger and garlic.
  5. In a saucepan, add a tablespoon of oil and place on low-medium heat. Cook the onion and carrot until the onion is translucent. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for a further few minutes.
  6. Peel and cut the potatoes into 8 pieces. Peel and grate the apples.
  7. Add the stock to the pot along with the potatoes and bring to the boil.
  8. Reduce heat till sauce is just simmering.
  9. Add the grated apple, honey, salt and allow to simmer for 5 minutes.
  10. Add 3 tablespoons of curry roux and stir through to combine. The sauce will begin to thicken. Remove from heat after 3-4 minutes or when the sauce has thickened to your desired texture.
  11. Add the Worcestershire, tomato and soy sauces to taste and adjust seasoning.
  12. Serve over crumbed fried pork cutlets or chicken with steamed rice and a green salad.
  13. The curry sauce will keep in the fridge for up to one week or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

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