One of my mum's favourite sayings when I was a kid was "Stop showing off in front of your mates". I hated it. Even if you weren’t showing off in the slightest, there's nothing you can do when someone says that - because any protest is a direct admission that you were indeed showing off.
Most of the time though, I definitely WAS showing off, and so the comment was perfectly justified. I continue this streak today – constantly looking at ways in which I can show off my skills or look good – usually in the company of the opposite sex.
So I was thrilled to learn that I was to go down to Scene in Spinningfields and try their off-menu curry – the Phall. It’s considered to be the world’s hottest curry, and as someone who believes himself to be able to handle a lot of heat, it was perfect for a bit of showing off.
The Phall came to fruition within the Bangladeshi communities in Birmingham sometime in the 70’s and since then has achieved legendary status as being the one dish that is guaranteed to blow your tits off and get you sweating.
Not for the faint (or weak) hearted, the Phall is packed with Scotch Bonnet and Habanero chillies, alongside more traditional notes of ginger and fennel seeds. Down at Scene I got head chef Sudesh to cook me up a batch and I can honestly say it was the hottest curry I’ve ever popped in my big fat gob.
It wasn’t ridiculous though – it could still be enjoyed and actually tasted rather great. I got a bit of a sweat on and there was definitely a vicious after-kick, which surprisingly enough, could only be countered by eating more curry. Our camera man Joe also tried some and went so red that I thought his head was going to explode all over my poppadoms.
If you think you can handle the heat, or want to try and show off, then head on down to Scene anytime and order their Phall. As mentioned, it’s not actually on the menu but you can still order it and they’ll bang a batch up for you. Just don’t come running to me when you’re running down the street breathing fire, looking for the nearest pot of Petit Filous.
Scene Indian Street Kitchen, 4a Leftbank Spinningfields, Manchester M3 3AN
0161 839 3929