HOUSTON -- The Rice Box Truck specializes in your favorite guilty-pleasure Chinese food. John Peterson, the guy behind the Box frequently serves up lunch at his alma mater, the University of Houston.

I studied business right over there at Melcher Hall, he explained, pointing down the road.

During his studies, Peterson traveled to China and picked up a passion for the food, which he re-created for the American palate at The Rice Box.

I just keep it simple, cause the reality is, it is fast food Chinese food -- General Tso s Chicken, sesame, sweet and sour, these are all things I survived on when we were in college, he said of his food philosophy.

Around campus, Peterson is best known for his General Tso s Chicken a twice-fried favorite he drenches in a secret homemade sauce.

From the familiar red and white boxes, to the disposable chopstix and eggrolls, The Rice Box is everything you love about Chinese take-out, but out of a truck, and a fast one at that.

This truck does 0-60 in about 15 seconds -- pretty competitive on the street with other food trucks, he said with a laugh.

Peterson is not just a food guy, he s also car guy. Powered by Rice is proudly stenciled on the front of the truck a clever reference to the so-called Ricer import automotive-culture. Before the self-taught chef got into food, he set up a blog with half a million Facebook followers across the world, who now follow his food truck, too.

It s us putting Houston on their map, he said.

From fast food to fast cars, Peterson said he s happy he returned to Houston to serve the school that helped make it all happen.

It is like the universe put me back out here, he said.

Peterson is planning to open a second truck within the next few weeks. He frequently serves the UH campus and the Montrose area. You can follow him on Twitter @RiceBoxTruck.

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