This new mix of sweets and spices has us ready for a road trip.

Curry rice is one of Japan’s favorite meals, but no one eats just a plate of rice and roux. There’s always some other co-starring ingredient, and later this month we’re going to see the debut of an especially unusual one in the form of Tokyo Banana Curry.

Pictured above, Tokyo Banana is a bite-sized sponge cake filled with banana cream. That straightforward appeal has made it one of Tokyo’s most popular souvenir sweets, and also a versatile starting point for all sorts of spinoffs and collaborations, the newest of which are two different types of curry.

Both curries use a special roux developed in coordination with Tokyo Banana World, the Tokyo Banana sub-brand for its most innovative projects. Using their patissier know-how, Tokyo Banana World has created a banana puree that’s added to the roux, contributing a sweet aroma and rich flavor to the ordinarily spicy sauce. The first variety is Banana Butter Chicken, and the second Banana, Nuts, and Fruit Curry, which also has cashews, mango, and kiwi.

▼ The preview photos even suggest scooping your rice into the soft-sided crescent shape of the Tokyo Banana dessert.

Despite Tokyo Banana being part of its name, though, Tokyo Banana Curry won’t be offered in Tokyo, at least not initially. Instead, it’s going on sale at the Ebina Service Area expressway rest stop complex in the town of Ebina, Kanagawa Prefecture (specifically on the south/west-bound side of the expressway). In addition to instant/retort packs of the curry for 734 yen (US$4.90) in the rest stop’s gift shop, plates of Tokyo Banana Curry Rice will also be offered in the food court for 1,000 yen.

▼ Odds are the retort pouches will make their way to Tokyo stores eventually, but for now, between this and the Tokyo Banana Melon Bread that the service area was selling last month, Ebina (which is around 40 minutes southwest of Tokoy) really is becoming a place worth visiting for Tokyo Banana fans.

Banana and curry might seem like an odd flavor combination, but sliced bananas were once offered by popular curry chain Coco Ichibanya, and with the sweeter notes of Japanese curry (compared to curries from other countries), the two tastes mix more harmoniously than you might expect. Plus, while this is Tokyo Banana’s first time selling straight-up curry roux, when we tried Tokyo Banana’s Legendary Curry Bread a while back, it definitely lived up to its name.

Tokyo Banana Curry retort pouches go on sale April 23, and will be offered in the Ebina Service Area food court from April 23 to May 23.

Source: PR Times
Top image: PR Times
Insert images: PR Times (1, 2), SoraNews24
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