Restaurant: (316) 351-5596 / 3238 E Douglas Ave, Wichita KS 67208
Sun: Closed | M-Th: 11am-8pm | F-Sat: 11am-10pm
Food Truck & Catering: (785) 380-7340

What’s a Hawaiian Plate Lunch?

By August 28, 2018 Blog

Hawaiian Plate Lunch Comes to Wichita KS

If you’ve ever visited Noble House one of the first things you will notice is they serve a wide variety of Hawaiian Plate Lunches. You also may have been confused by the term, especially if it’s dinner time but no worries, the Hawaiian Plate Lunch is a traditional island meal and is available all day and night. So no matter when you’re craving favorites such as teriyaki beef or garlic shrimp, you can fill up at Noble House.

The History of Hawaiian Plate Lunch

The Hawaiian Plate Lunch, which is a mainstay of Hawaiian food culture, first appeared in Hawaii in it’s current form back in the 1880s. At the time laborers were in high demand by the fruit and sugar companies on the islands. As the demand grew, laborers were brought in from around the world, including China, Japan, Portugal and the Philippines. The workers didn’t eat sandwiches or things of that nature, instead they ate leftover rice and mixed it with things like canned meat, teriyaki, cold meat, scrambled eggs or pickles, with almost no salad or vegetable. At some point macaroni salad was added to the plates, not only because it was a good bridge for national taste, but also it mixed well with most of the meats used in the plate lunches.

Once the plantations came to an end, plate lunches began being served on-site by lunch wagons to construction workers and day laborers. Eventually it started showing up in local hole in the wall restaurants before the first “plate lunch” restaurants began popping up. Before long there were even a few plate lunch franchises and they made the jump to the US, where the craze spread into California.

What’s in a Hawaiian Plate Lunch?

The plate lunch has become a staple of Hawaiian eating and is similar to the Southern US “meat and threes”. The difference of course is the cultural influences such as the pan-Asian influence on Hawaiian cuisine and some have even traced it’s roots back to the Japanese Bento Box.

Your standard Hawaiian Plate Lunch consist of two scoops of white rice, macaroni salad and an entrée. If a plate lunch has more than one entrée then it is considered a “mixed plate”.  At Noble House if you get the mini then it only includes one scoop of rice.

Popular plate lunches include Chicken Katsu, which is fried boneless chicken breaded in Panko bread crumbs, Teriyaki Beef, Kālua Pork, Garlic Shrimp and Lau Lau, which is fish wrapped in a taro leaf. Not all influences are asian however as you will find a popular dish by the name of Loco Moco, which is a hamburger steak smothered in brown gravy and topped with a sunny side egg. This dish was clearly influenced by American culture, although you can get it with fried spam instead of hamburger if you want to keep it more traditional.

Noble House Hawaiian Serving up Plate Lunches to Wichita KS

Noble House Hawaiian Plate Lunch is the brick and mortar location for the popular Noble House food truck. It’s located on Douglas Ave near the intersection of Douglas and Hillside in the College Hill neighborhood in Wichita Kansas. There you will find a wide variety of plate lunches including all the varieties mentioned above and more such as the Huli Huli Chicken and the Kalbi Ribs. In addition they have a wide selection of Poke, Hawaiian breakfast dishes, beverages and traditional deserts. It’ll make your stomach say “Mahalo”!