There is a new Lebanese restaurant in town that I am eager to check out. Upon reviewing their menu online, I saw a dish called Moussaka Batinjan that involved the ingredients in my version of the dish I made tonight.
Thick, rich tomato stew studded with creamy chickpeas, braised eggplant and fresh parsley served over basmati rice.
Chickpea and Eggplant Stew
1 large eggplant, skin on and sliced into medium cubes
4 tbl extra virgin olive oil, divided
1/2 white onion, small dice
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbl organic sugar
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1-28oz can crushed tomatoes
2 tsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 tbl molasses
1-15 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, divided
2 cups cooked Basmati Rice
Place the eggplant cubes in a colander over a bowl and sprinkle with 1 tbl of salt. Toss and rest, letting the salt drain out excess moisture in the eggplant. Sit for at least 15 minutes.
In a large saute pan, heat 2 tbl of oil and sweat the onions until soft and translucent. Add the eggplant, garlic and remaining 2 tbl of oil. Cover and saute over medium heat for 10 minutes until the eggplant has slightly browned and has softened. Add the sugar, salt and pepper and toss to combine. Add the crushed tomatoes, lemon juice, molasses, chickpeas and 2 tbl of parsley. Toss, cover and saute for 20 more minutes until thick and stew-like.
Garnish with remaining parsley and serve over basmati rice.