Texas is Tacos

Photo by Ryan Thorson

Texas is many things: the Alamo, armadillos, Willie Nelson, and pecan pie.  However, one thing stands out, more so than other cultural emblems associated with the Lone Star State: Texas is tacos. Whether you like your tacos crunchy or soft, beef or chicken, corn tortilla or flour, or even if you’ve come here recently and prefer those imported fish tacos, it’s hard to deny that tacos and Texas go together.

Although a Mexican staple, a taco is undeniably a Texan food, one that’s been around pretty much since the beginning!  Since it comes from both geographical areas, we decided to split the difference and call this kind of cuisine Tex-Mex. Whatever label you put it under, the taco is a hit wherever it’s served.

As popular as they are, Tacos don’t always get the love that you’d think they deserve. Back in 1977, the Texas Legislature declared that chili is the state food dish of Texas.  However, if some taco enthusiasts get their way, this could change. According to an article appearing in the Houston Chronicle, some folks in Houston are trying to make the case that it’s time to retire chili in favor of the taco as the new state dish, citing the tortilla based finger-food’s greater popularity. Who knows how that will turn out? However, based on the nonsense that tends to come out of government these days, perhaps attention to this matter would be a step up.

No matter which one emerges the victor of the great Chili-Taco shootout, it’s hard to deny that Texas culture is its own thing. Whether you favor chili, or tacos, or even if you put chili in a tortilla and call it both, it’s all part of what we are. Wherever Texans breathe the free, chili-scented air, you’ll find them, head held high… holding a taco.