July 21, 2020

Eggplant, Chickpea & Tomato Bake

Recipe: Sami Tamimi & Tara Wigley

Try this Eggplant, Chickpea & Tomato Bake recipe from the new cookbook, Falastin.

Echoes of Greek moussaka are correctly heard here (the dish is named moussaq’a), both in the name and the feel of the dish. It’s a vegetarian take on the hearty, humble, healthful and completely delicious sheet-pan dish. It works well either as a veggie main or as a side with all sorts of things — piled into a baked potato, for example, or served alongside some grilled meat, fish or tofu. It’s just the sort of dish you want to have in the fridge ready to greet you after a day at work. It’s also lovely at room temperature, so it’s great for an on-the-go lunch. You can make and bake this in advance; it keeps in the fridge for up to three days, ready to be warmed through when needed.


  • 5 medium eggplants (2 ¾ lb./1.25 kg)
  • ½ cup/120 mL olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 1 onion, finely chopped (1 cup/150 g)
  • 6 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tsp chile flakes
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 ½ tsp tomato paste
  • 2 green bell peppers, seeded and cut into 1 ¼”/3 cm chunks (1 1/3 cups/200 g)
  • 1 x 14-oz./400 g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (1 ¾ cups/240 g)
  • 1 x 14-oz./400 g can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 ½ tsp sugar
  • ¾ cup plus 2 tbsp/200 mL water
  • 1 cup/20 g cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 4 plum tomatoes, trimmed and sliced into ½”/1.5 cm rounds (12 ¼ oz./350 g)


Yield: Serves 4 as a main, 6 as a side

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Use a vegetable peeler to peel away strips of eggplant skin from top to bottom, leaving the eggplants with alternating strips of black skin and white flesh, like a zebra. Cut crosswise into round slices, ¾”/2 cm thick, and place in a large bowl. Mix well with 5 tbsp/75 mL of oil, 1 tsp of salt and plenty of black pepper, and spread out on the prepared baking sheets. Roast for about 30 minutes, or until completely softened and lightly browned. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  3. Decrease the oven temperature to 400°F.
  4. While the eggplants are roasting, put 2 tbsp of oil into a large sauté pan and place over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook for about 7 minutes, until softened and lightly browned. Add the garlic, chili flakes, cumin, cinnamon and tomato paste and cook for 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add the bell peppers, chickpeas, canned tomatoes, sugar, water, 1 ¼ tsp of salt and a good grind of black pepper. Decrease the heat to medium and cook for 18 minutes, or until the bell peppers have cooked through. Stir in ¾ cup/15 g of cilantro and remove from the heat.
  5. Spread out half the plum tomatoes and half the roasted eggplants in a large baking dish, about 9 x 13″/23 x 33 cm. Top with the chickpea mixture, then layer with the remaining tomatoes and eggplants. Drizzle with the remaining 1 tbsp of oil, then cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 20 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbling and the tomatoes have completely softened. Remove from the oven and let cool for about 20 minutes. Top with the remaining ¼ cup/5 g cilantro and serve either warm or at room temperature.

Excerpted from Falastin by Sami Tamimi and Tara Wigley. Copyright © 2020 Sami Tamimi and Tara Wigley. Published by Appetite by Random House®, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.