Taco rice (タコライス takoraisu?) is a Japanese dish and a popular example of Okinawan cuisine. It consists of taco-flavored ground beef served on a bed of rice, frequently served with shredded cheese, shredded lettuce, tomato and salsa.
Charlie's Tacos, serving tacos in shells made from rice flour, had been established in 1956 as the first "taco place" on Okinawa. Taco rice was created in 1984 by Matsuzo Gibo and introduced at two of his cafes, Parlor Senri and King Tacos, located just a minute from the main gate of Camp Hansen in Kin, Okinawa.
Taco rice is a popular dish among U.S. military personnel stationed in Okinawa as lunch or late night food. KFC put it on their menu throughout Japan for a time during the 1990s and Yoshinoya, a nationwide gyudon restaurant, serves it in the chain's restaurants in Okinawa prefecture. In addition, Taco Bell offers it as a menu option at the chain's restaurant in the Shibuya district of Tokyo. It is one of the most well-known dishes of the Okinawan cuisine outside of Okinawa.
The Tex-Mex flavor is sometimes emulated through the use of soy sauce, mirin and sake. Occasionally it is served with rice in a tortilla roll. The ingredients of taco meat, rice, and cheese are combined, dipped in batter, and deep fried into a "taco rice ball", served with salsa or tomato ketchup.
- "Today's Food Culture - Time to rediscover traditional cooking". Okinawa Convention & Visitors Bureau. 31 March 2005. Archived from the original on 30 November 2006. Retrieved 19 May 2015.
- Sean Williams (2013). The Ethnomusicologists' Cookbook: Complete Meals from Around the World. Routledge. p. 49. ISBN 9781135518967. Retrieved 19 May 2015.
- Christopher Scharping (2012). Searching for Happily Ever After. Xlibris Corporation. p. 49. ISBN 9781479732401. Retrieved 19 May 2015.
- "This Japanese Dish Exists Only Because Of The US Military". We Are The Mighty. 17 March 2015. Archived from the original on 19 May 2015. Retrieved 19 May 2015.
- Oscar Johnson and Elena Sugiyama (28 March 2015), "A TRIBUTE TO TACO RICE: The U.S. military's favorite Mex-Oki fusion food", Stars and Stripes Okinawa, archived from the original on 19 May 2015, retrieved 19 May 2015
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