Sides, Vegan, Vegetarian
Comments 7

Vegan Carrot, Parsnip and Leek Bhajis

More often than not, I plan my dinner in the morning while I’m at work. I’ve tried weekly meal planning on Sundays, but the lack of spontaneity frustrates me and I find I don’t enjoy cooking nearly so much when everything has been laid out so far in advance.

If I search Pinterest, BBC Good Food and my soul for inspiration and still come up empty, there’s only ever one thing for it: The ALDI Super 6. Every week, there are six fruits and vegetables on special offer in ALDI right at the front of the supermarket. I tend to just wander down on my lunchbreak (considerably earlier than most thanks to my weird working hours) and stare at the Super 6 ingredients until my brain turns them into a dinner.

This week, I found my dinner in parsnips (39p), carrots (39p) and leeks (59p). I could have turned them into some kind of delicious soup, but we did soup last week and to be honest, I was craving some good old fashioned fried stuff. So, bhajis it was.

Vegan Carrot, Parsnip and Leek Bhajis

I mucked about with this recipe a bit before deciding which to go with. Most bhaji recipes call for more gram flour than I like. I like it to be more veg, less stodge, I think you get the ‘fried stuff’ taste and texture a little better that way. Tom disagreed, and preferred the versions I made with slightly more gram flour. I put it out to a vote and won, so these are what you’re getting.

On spice: the more you add, the more delicious, natch. However, if you want to get the lovely autumnal carroty parsnippy leeky flavours coming through, go with slightly less curry powder. It’s for this reason that I’ve left the measurements so vague. Also on spice: just bunging curry powder in is not in any way authentic, I’m being lazy and trying to keep the ingredient list to a minimum.

Serves 2-3

1 parsnip, grated
1 carrot, grated
1/2 a leek, finely sliced
70g chickpea flour/gram flour
1-3 tbsps curry powder
vegetable/sunflour oil for frying

  1. In a bowl, mix together the parsnip, carrot, leek, flour and curry powder with a big pinch of salt and the curry powder. Add just under half a cup of water to form a batter.
  2. Heat about 2cm of oil in a frying pan. Test to make sure that it’s hot enough by putting a tiny bit of the batter in, if it sizzles you are good to go.
  3. Spoon the batter into the oil – you should make somewhere between five and six – and gently flatten each bhaji. Cook for a few minutes either side, or until both sides are a gorgeous crispy golden brown.
  4. Drain on kitchen paper before serving to ensure you don’t get a mouthful of grease.

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Carrot, Parsnip and Leek Bhajis

Aldi sent me store vouchers to buy the ingredients for this recipe.


  1. These look delicious! And an inventive way to meal plan and their super 6 are often seasonal so another reason it’s a great way to plan! I will have to give these a try!

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