It is the breakfast to end all breakfasts - and very nearly the people who attempt to eat it.

A mammoth fry-up of two eggs, six rashers of bacon, two sausages, a fried slice, mushrooms, beans or tomatoes, and a mountain chips.

The Blowout – although it would be more aptly named heart-attack-on-a-plate – is the creation of Farouk Hassanein, owner of the Fat Boys café in Thornton Heath.

Croydon Guardian:

The Blowout

For £14.95 hungry diners, or perhaps overly ambitious ones, are given an hour to chow down what a seemingly impossible amount of food.

Those who are successful get their money back, and in the unlikely event they are still feeling a peckish Farouk will throw in a free dessert of jam roll or spotted dick with custard to round off the meal.

The greasy spoon’s boss said the ginormous breakfast had been the Thornton Road café’s main attraction since he opened it 21 years ago.

He estimates it contains anywhere between 4,500 to 4,800 calories – so it is definitely not a meal for the health-conscious.

He said: “We find that people are very happy to do the challenge, but only one out of 40 finish it.

“We try to use good quality items that don’t soak up a lot of oil, but it is a fry-up so there are a lot of calories.

“I even get doctors and GPs ordering it from us.”

He added: “The idea came up when we designed the café for a big eater and it has just gone from there.

“If you are a big eater, trust me, you will finish it before the hour.”

About 40 customers attempt the mammoth breakfast each month, but only one or two are able to finish it.

No woman has ever been able to defeat the Blowout, says Farouk.

So naturally, I stepped up the plate to see if I could change that.

I’m not normally one to be fazed by a challenge -in fact I am often told I am too competitive - but when this mountain of food was placed in front of me I wondered what an earth I had got myself into.

Still, I picked up my knife and fork and tucked in.

I had no tactic; it was more of a frantic attempt to shovel as much food down my throat as quickly as I could.

A friend told me that “the best thing to do is combine as much as possible, eat things together so you don’t get full”.

This did not work.

For anyone who thought that the human body doesn’t feel full until 20 minutes after food is consumed, it turns out that is just an old wives’ tale.

Fifteen minutes in I was struggling – but at least I managed to eat all my mushrooms, most of my bacon, a sausage and an egg.

Not bad, right?


Croydon Guardian:

A quarter of the way through the challenge and I had barely made a dent in the meal

There were still piles of cholesterol-laden chips, greasy bacon, tomatoes and a fried slice left to go.

I was joined in the café by a pair of builders who sat in the booth opposite me.

They were there when the Blowout was brought out to me and at one point, while watching me eat in the most unladylike fashion, one of them commented: “I have never seen a girl eat like that before”.

I’m still unsure if they were impressed by the amount I had eaten or how disgusted they were with my manners.

Twenty minutes in I was still eating like it was my last meal, but I could feel it catching up to me.

At one point I seriously considering abandoning all sense of public decency and unbuttoning my jeans.

But a wise voice in my head told me this would not be a good look for someone already eating an unfathomable amount of food.

Then, at 30 minutes in, I began to sweat. I mean really sweat.

I’m pretty sure my body was trying to make room for more food by excreting what I had already eaten through my sweat glands.

I kept thinking, “this cannot be healthy” - all the while continuing to chow down an extreme amount of saturated fat.

Croydon Guardian:

I simply couldn't manage another chip

But I had started to slow down dramatically.

By 40 minutes in I wasn’t just struggling, I was almost incapable of eating. Or moving.

My limbs felt heavy, I was bloated, my breathing had become heavy, and with every bite I was struggling to keep my food down.

I had been trying to keep my pace by taking sips of water and letting the food settle in my stomach, but even this was failing me.

Lost for ideas, I decided to take smaller mouthfuls but maintain the same pace.

No such luck.

So at 50 minutes in, when even the sight of a chip made me feel physically ill, I threw up my hands and admitted defeat.

Croydon Guardian:

After starting off optimistic, I ended the challenge unable to move

Farouk praised me for an impressive attempt, but I knew I would never live this down in the office.

I waddled out of the café feeling defeated and, as predicted, I was told I was a failure when I returned to my desk.

Looks like I won’t be quitting my day job to become a competitive eater anytime soon.