Guess who’s back, back again.
I figured it was time to return here after a lengthy hiatus from frequenting this establishment. Next on my list was re-visiting an iconic classics. The Belly Buster. I’d previously done their original, but this time I wanted to tackle the chicken variant. Until recently, it had remained undefeated. I wasn’t sure why, but spurred on (and reminded of the challenge) by someone’s recent success, I went to investigate.
The chicken Belly Buster consists of:
- 10 Butterflied chicken fillets
- A whole tomato (or two)
- A head of salad
- A whole onion (raw)
- More mayonnaise than any human should have to eat
- One large burger bun (brioche in nature?)
You have 40 minutes to eat it all. Winner gets £250 cash, a sweet T-shirt, and your picture on the wall of fame. As if this wasn’t sweet enough, you get your whole table’s bill for free (only food ordered up to the point the challenge starts though). If you lose, you cough up the £55 price (you actually have to pay up front for this one, cash only, but will get the money back if you win + prizes), and have your picture taken with a toilet seat over your head, as if the shame wasn’t bad enough. Still, it’s in good spirit.
I saw a lad doing the beef Belly Buster before me, and truth be told, I was glad I didn’t have to take that one on again. The thick beef patty just seemed too dense and heavy, bringing back flashback of having to digest it after last time.
Now, onto the approach. This time I wasn’t just up against 1 patty, but 10 whole chicken breasts! Surely this, along with the few successes before would mean I was in for a tough challenge! Truth be told, no. This seemed a lot easier than my first attempt. Whether this was due to me having more experience over the years, or just the chicken one being easier, or both, I’m not sure. My plan was to replicate my previous approach. Go for proteins, then carbs. Since this was a larger challenge, I knew I would need to be conservative with my capacity.
I was ready, the timer was primed. Boom. Off the top burger bun went, onto the plate I had set aside. I would be saving that one for later. The chicken breasts were as you would expect. In fairness, they weren’t overly dry, but we’re not talking about succulent steak here. The cheese topping actually helped since it added moisture and mixed up flavours. Straight off the bat, due to the dryer nature of my protein of choice, I decided to pair up the chicken breasts with the vegetables on the burger. My next choice was also the pool of mayonnaise. Chicken and mayo is actually a great combination, so I wasn’t complaining there, at least not at the start.
Other than that, the only other tip would be to use your hands to rip the breasts into smaller bite sized chunks. This will save you on chewing more and help not wear out the jaw. I wrapped some of the chunks in the salad leaves to make mini salad wraps, other bites I just dipped in mayo. Nothing special really, just a good, steady, but fast pace. Before I knew it, I was coming to the end of the chicken breasts. I set one aside for later in case I wanted to break up the flavour of the bun. The worst part of this stage was probably the onion. Its flavour was sharp, and not entirely complementary to the rest of the items, at least to me. Also, the mayo towards the end. There was just too much, and with such a rich food, the body grew tired of it rather quickly.
With most of the chicken done, it was time to see away the bun. For this part, based on past experience, I had a carbonated beverage ready (diet of course, we need to watch our figures) to help break up the flavours and deal with air pockets. The bun was… actually amazing. The texture was soft and fluffy. The taste was reminiscent of brioche. With the sweet beverage, this was almost cakey. A welcome mix to the chicken. The only downside were the bits where the mayo had soaked into it. Even then, the drink helped mask the flavour and the bubbles the texture. The top bun was toasted more, so in the order to speed it up a bit, I poured some of the drink onto it towards the end to help soften it up. Not too much though, since you don’t want mush.
The timer ticked along. The crowd gathered in anticipation. The end was in sight. The last barrier before me was the lonely chicken breast I had saved to the end. Why… the thought of more mayo covered chicken after my brioche cake bun was unappetising. The pressure of the time mounted and I pushed on. With the last bite, the timer stopped. It was over. Man had won with a time of 19.55. Under 20 minutes, I exhaled with relief.
Now, I really don’t know why the chicken burger has had so few wins. Maybe people forget it exists, maybe they don’t like chicken, but in my opinion, this is the far easier choice to get a win. With this you know what you’re getting. 10 chicken breasts, that’s it. Chickens can only get so big, unlike burger patties. Overall, this is a fair challenge both quantity and time wise, with a fantastic reward and I would highly recommend it to all those who want to test themselves with a difficult, but achievable challenge.
The service was very friendly and accommodating. This place has come into its own over the years since I’ve last been here. The crowd really took the atmosphere to the next level. Challenges are what this place is all about, so for someone reading a food challenge blog, you really have no excuse not to visit one of their locations. Bring some friends, have some fun, make an event of it, be silly. It’s not every day you see comically large burgers or ice creams the size of small children. Even if you lose, have a laugh.
42 Syon Ln,
020 8560 0059