Eggplant fatteh, or fattet batinjan, is a mouthwatering Levantine eggplant dish made with layers of garlicky-tahini yogurt, fried eggplants, chickpeas, and crunchy pita bread.
The word fatteh means crumbs in Arabic, and it accurately describes this savory pita bread mess of a delicious dish.
This Middle Eastern dish is common in the levant region, including Lebanon, Syria, Palestine, and Jordan. All you'll need for this eggplant fatteh recipe is few simple ingredients and a pinch of passion for Middle Eastern flavors.
What You'll Love
Fattet batinjan is mesmerizing at how simple ingredients can make for an incredible culinary experience. The garlic tahini yogurt, fried eggplant chunks, chickpeas, and crunchy pita bread are quick and easy to whip up. Great for meal prep, just store the ingredients separately in an airtight container.
- Eggplant: Some people make the dish without the eggplant, but this ingredient adds a beautiful flavor twist. Use any type of purple eggplant
- Flour: Use all-purpose flour. I mix two tablespoons of flour with the cubed eggplants before I fry them. This gives them an incredible crunchy coating.
- Pita Bread: Use any pita bread, even stale bread.
- Chickpeas: Boiled chickpeas are essential to all known versions of fatteh.
- Yogurt: Full fat works best in this recipe, but you can substitute it for half-fat varieties. Skimmed yogurt won't give you the right texture.
- Garlic: Crush the fresh garlic into a paste.
- Tahini: I know people who make fatteh without tahini but this ingredient lifts this dish up, so I really recommend that you use it. Make your own tahini, or buy it from the store.
- Dried or fresh parsley: Use parsley to garnish the garlic tahini yogurt mix.
- Pine Nuts: Toasted to perfection in a little bit of butter or ghee.
- Frying oil: Use vegetable oil or other frying oil for the pita bread and eggplant cubes.
- Salt and black pepper to taste
See the recipe card at the bottom of the post for ingredient quantities.
How to Make Eggplant Fatteh
Cut the eggplant cubes into small pieces. Mix the eggplant cubes with the flour (this creates a nice crunchy coating once they're fried).
Fry the eggplant cubes and set them aside.
Combine the yogurt, garlic, parsley, and tahini in a large bowl.
Set the garlicky yogurt tahini sauce aside.
Deep fry the pita bread until it's crunchy. Remove with a slotted spoon, and set the pieces aside.
Boil the chickpeas and set them aside. Toast the pine nuts in the ghee and set aside (make sure you toast them on low heat because they burn easily).
On a large serving plate, layer the fatteh following this pattern: yogurt-tahini mixture, chickpeas, fried eggplants, fried crispy pita, toasted pine nuts, and another yogurt mixture layer.
Garnish with parsley or fresh herbs.
Tips and Tricks
- Combine everything just prior to serving so that the pita bread stays crispy.
- Mash the garlic cloves into a garlic paste using a mortar and pestle.
Variations and Substitutions
- Top the dish with ground beef or ground lamb cooked with Middle Eastern spices such as allspice, seven spices, salt, and ground cinnamon. Or make an aubergine-beef layer (eggplant-beef layer) by mixing the fried eggplant cubes and cooked meat.
- Add a mixture of kernels and nuts along with the pine nuts. Cashews make a great addition, and so do almond slivers.
- Top with pomegranate seeds (aka pomegranate arils)
- Make a healthier version by air-frying the eggplant pieces. Make toasted pita rather than fried pita chips. Toast the pine nuts until golden brown in the oven (rather than fried pine nuts in butter or ghee).
- There are different variations of fatteh, like chicken fatteh or another vegetarian fatteh recipe called hummus fatteh (fattet hummus).
- A good whisk
- An air-fryer (If you want to make a lighter version of this recipe)
- Large prep bowls
- A large ladle to layer all the ingredients
- Large pot and slotted spoon for frying
- Large round plate
Eggplant fatteh is best eaten right away so that the pita bread stays crunchy. If planning on having leftovers, don't mix all of the ingredients, rather keep them separate until ready to serve.
Layer the eggplant fatteh starting with the yogurt-tahini mixture, chickpeas, fried eggplant, fried pita bread, yogurt-tahini mixture again, then topped with toasted pinenuts. Garnish with parsley or any other fresh herb.
Middle Eastern Desserts
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Vegetarian Eggplant Fatteh (Fattet Batinjan)
- 2 large eggplants cubed
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 2 large pita breads cut into pieces
- ½ cup vegetable oil for frying eggplants and pita bread
- 1 cup of boiled chickpeas can use canned chickpeas
- ¼ cup of pine nuts
- 1 tablespoon ghee
Yogurt Tahini Sauce
- 3 tablespoons tahini sesame paste
- 2 cups full fat or semi-fat yogurt
- 2 cloves of mashed garlic
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley you can substitute this with 1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley
- Mix the eggplant cubes with the flour (this creates a nice crunchy coating once they're fried).
- Fry the eggplant cubes and set them aside.
- Fry the pita bread until it's crunch and set the pieces aside.
- Combine the yogurt, garlic, parsley, and tahini in a bowl, set aside.
- Boil the chickpeas and set aside.
- Toast the pine nuts in the ghee and set aside (make sure you toast them on low heat because they burn easy).
- On a serving plate, layer the fatteh following this pattern: Yogurt mixture, chickpeas, fried eggplants, fried pita bread, toasted pine nuts, and another yogurt mixture layer. You can garnish with parsley or any other fresh herb.
- This dish is perfect to be served straight after cooking. Leftovers do not keep well.
- You can save some of the ghee left after toasting the pine nuts and use it to drizzle over the serving dish.