Bradford – Sadaqat’s Challenge at The Sheesh Mahal

The weekend in Chester came to a conclusion, next time stay in the Travelodge.

Speeding along the M55, M6 then M62 we contacted Ricky to advise him of our estimated time of arrival in Bradford. Ricky was just back from Budapest, he needed Curry too. The Sheesh Mahal (6 St. Thomas’s Rd, Bradford, BD1 2RW) is now open from 11.00 every day, what a wonderful idea. Today would be our first daytime Curry-Heute at the Sheesh Mahal.

We entered just after 14.00, we were not alone, though it was quiet. Sadaqat, Mein Host, recognised us. He has won the the privilege of working the day shift instead of the long nights. The Menus were brought and the Complementary Starters trickled to the table. Firstly the Salad, then the Dips and finally the Poppadoms.

Hector knew that without Omar’s presence the normal Omar Special would be hard to secure. I asked for Lamb Methi on-the-bone, Ricky asked for it off. Marg would accompany us with a Vegetable Pakora, supplemented later by a Mango Lassi. As ever the choice of Inclusive Breads saw Hector take the Chapattis, whilst Ricky chose Roti. If a fourth Chapatti is required, this costs an extra 30p. How come Bradford gets this so right?

The Lime Pickle was vicious, and tempered by the Yoghurt Dip. The Poppadoms were devoured. There was time to go upstairs and take a photo of the empty premises. What a huge change the redevelopment has made to this venue. The ambience is much better, the quality of the food maintains.

Marg enjoyed her Pakora and her very large Glass of Mango Lassi.  There was plenty of Yoghurt Dip and Salad left to accompany the Pakora.

The Lamb Methi presented to Hector was much more Oily than the Dry version set before Ricky. The flavours were sublime, the Chapattis were being wolfed down too. Give me three Chapattis and I will eat three Chapattis. Ricky’s Roti inevitably were on the Crispy side. Marg ate her Pakora and watched two Curry Nuts enjoy their Feed. The Curry at the Sheesh Mahal is beyond description, this is Bradford Curry at its absolute best!

The Challenge

Sadaqat brought a side plate to us and announced that these were samples of two Meat Dishes – the Challenge was to work out what they were.

Pieces of our Plentiful Breads were Dipped, Gosh! The intensity of flavour was remarkable. Ricky spotted Tripe right away. The second sample had small Disk-like pieces that looked like Lentils, but Mein Host had insisted it was Meat. It had to be Brain – Sheep’s Brain. We were asked again what else was in the Masala with the Tripe?  The Masala was Dark, Thick and very Rich in flavour, I had guessed it was another (unknown) Herb. Sadaqat came back to end the Challenge.  Mein Host took great delight in informing us that we had just eaten Liquidised Goat Testicles cooked in the Stock from Paya (Trotters). I don’t know why we hadn’t worked this out, or even managed a decent guess…

This was the Staff Curry, it does not appear on the Menu. Ricky had Brains once before, a mistake. Trotters was on our radar until Ahmed, my Curryspondent, described the cooking process to me a couple of months back. Fortunately we had not eaten Meatballs.

The Bill

£16.47. Que? There was a 10% discount for being an Afternoon Customer. So no more CAMRA discount?  But then, how small can a price be?

The Aftermath

Sadaqat announced that he is Omar’s Uncle! No wonder he recognised us, but had we recognised him? I suspect Sadaqat will be clean shaven next time we meet. He was reluctant to pose for the Photo initially, but when he produced another plate of the Staff Curry, he felt more at ease. I hope he enjoyed it.

It was now Marg’s turn to enjoy the delights of Bradford. There is a shop in Haworth…

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1 Response to Bradford – Sadaqat’s Challenge at The Sheesh Mahal

  1. Ahmed says:

    There is a very popular dish in Lahore called Takka Tak. It is a mix of goat testicles and kidneys (no paya or brains). It is cooked on a large platter at open roadside shacks. The cook has two large spatulas or chisels in his hand that make a takka-tak sound on the platter as as the ingredients are chopped fine while cooking.
    Best place for this is Lakshmi Chowk, Lahore in the evening.
    Pic at
    video at

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