Simply Lebanese

Eggplant Fatteh (Fatet Batenjan)

Eggplant Fatteh
  • Prep Time
    10 mins.
  • Cook Time
    30 mins.
  • Serving
    4
This Eggplant Fatteh is a Middle-eastern classic dish with an air-fried twist! Air-fried pita and eggplant, spiced beef, warm chickpeas, garlicky yogurt and toasted nuts are layered on top of one another for a punch of irresistible flavor.
Eggplant Fatteh

Fatteh is one of my all-time favorite meals. It is one of those dishes that I always have the ingredients on hand for and takes very little time to put together. It is my go-to on days where I don’t feel like cooking but still want a delicious home-cooked dish. Chickpea Fatte is probably the most well-known variety of fatteh. It has all the basics of warmed, cooked chickpeas, deep-fried (or baked) pita bread, a garlicky yogurt sauce and topped with some toasted nuts. That is the variety I typically make. Sometimes I will add some spiced sautéed ground beef or cubed beef on top to make it a little heartier.

Air-Fried Eggplant and Pita

Eggplant Fatteh is a very popular and versatile type of Fatteh. The main idea is adding deep-fried eggplant to the classic. Some people will omit the chickpeas when adding the eggplant. However, I feel like the chickpeas make it heartier, as well add a healthy dose of plant protein, so I prefer to keep them. The great thing about this dish is you can get away with choosing not to deep-fry the eggplant or even the pita chips. You can go the easier and much healthier route of baking them or air-frying, my new favorite way of cooking. I picked these eggplants from my own garden.  These eggplants have been growing in abundance in my vegetable and herbs garden every summer.

To make the air-fried eggplant, I peel about half the skin off the eggplant and chop them into large 1-2 inch cubes. I toss them in some avocado oil and salt and air-fry them for about 20 minutes until cooked through and crispy.

Eggplant Fatteh

The base of every fatteh dish is fried pita chips. To make the pita chips, I take a few loaves of regular pita (this is a wonderful way to use up any stale pita bread), and cut them into about 2 inch squares. Typically, I spray them with non-stick oil or toss them with a tablespoon of any neutral oil and bake them for about 5 minutes. But, since discovering how quick and easy they are to make in an air-fryer, it is my new go-to method. They only take about 3-4 minutes to get golden brown and toasted. Make sure to shake them up about every minute so they crisp up evenly.

Spiced Cubed Beef

More often than not, Eggplant Fatteh is a vegetarian dish. However, I personally love adding meat to it for that extra layer of flavor. If you would like to keep it vegetarian, then just skip this extra step. You can use ground beef or very thinly diced cubed beef. I like the bigger chunks, so, I thinly dice some rib-eye beef into about 1 cm cubes. I cook them in a skillet for a few minutes and season with some salt, pepper, and seven spices.

Eggplant Fatteh

Lastly, the remaining layers in this delicious dish are the sautéed pine nuts and garlicky yogurt sauce. The sauce is so easy to make, using plain yogurt (either Lebanese, Greek, or whatever you have on hand), some crushed garlic, salt, tahini and a little bit of water to thin it out. As for the nuts, you can use pine nuts, or slivered almonds.

How to Layer the Fatteh

What makes this dish so wonderful is that you can prepare all the components ahead of time (even the day before), and just assemble it when you are ready to serve it. While there is no “correct” way of layering this dish, typically the chickpeas and pita are at the bottom and the yogurt sauce is the final layer on top. The pita gets soggy very easily so, I like to serve everything separately and have everyone layer on their own plate so that all the layers stay fresh and crispy.

STEP 1

Cut the eggplant into large 1-2 inch cubes and place them in a large bowl.

Eggplant Fatteh
Eggplant Fatteh

Add the avocado oil and salt and toss to evenly coat.

Cook in the air fryer for about 20-22 min on 400 degrees.
Make sure to shake it up every 5 minutes for even cooking.

STEP 2

In a small skillet, add the diced ribeye with the avocado oil and cook over medium heat until cooked through. Season with the seven spices, salt and black pepper. Set aside.

Eggplant Fatteh

STEP 3

Cut the pita bread into 2 inch squares using scissors or your hands.

Eggplant Fatteh

Toss with some oil (1/2 tb.) and cook in the air fryer for 3-4 minutes until golden brown and toasted. Shake every minute for even cooking.

Eggplant Fatteh

STEP 4

In a small skillet, add the remaining 1 ½ tb. of avocado oil and sauté the pine nuts for 2 minutes until golden brown. Set aside in a small bowl.

Eggplant Fatteh

STEP 5

Crush the 2 cloves of garlic using mortar and pestle or your preferred method, then add to a medium-sized bowl.

Eggplant Fatteh

Add the yogurt, tahini paste, salt, and cold water.
Whisk thoroughly and set aside in the refrigerator to stay cold.

Eggplant Fatteh

STEP 6

Drain the chickpeas and wash thoroughly. In a small skillet, warm the chickpeas with some water for about 5 minutes over medium heat.

Eggplant Fatteh

Drain the water and set aside to start layering the dish.

Eggplant Fatteh

STEP 6

Layer the Eggplant Fatteh according to your preference. 

Eggplant Fatteh

I start with warmed chickpeas, then the crispy pita chips, followed by the eggplant, sautéed beef, yogurt sauce and pine nuts.

Lastly, I garnish with some chopped parsley and it is ready to eat! Enjoy!

Eggplant Fatteh
Eggplant Fatteh

Eggplant Fatteh (Fatet Batenjan)

This Eggplant Fatteh is a Middle-eastern classic dish with an air-fried twist! Air-fried pita and eggplant, spiced beef, warm chickpeas, garlicky yogurt and toasted nuts are layered on top of one another for a punch of irresistible flavor.
4.70 from 10 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Lebanese
Keyword: batinjan, Eggplant casserole, eggplant fatteh, Fatet, Fatet Batenjan, Makdous
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 657kcal
Author: Iman

Equipment

  • Air Fryer

Ingredients

Eggplant

  • 1 lg. Eggplant
  • 2 tb. Avocado Oil
  • ½ tsp. Salt

Meat Protein

Yogurt Sauce

  • cups Plain Yogurt
  • 2 cloves Garlic
  • 2 tsp. Tahini Paste
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • ¼ cup Cold Water

Instructions

  • Peel about half the eggplant (so it is striped).
    Cut the eggplant into large 1-2 inch cubes and place them in a large bowl. Add the avocado oil and salt and toss to evenly coat. Cook in the air-fryer, for about 20-22 min on 400 degrees. Make sure to shake it up every 5 minutes for even cooking.
  • In a small skillet, add the diced rib-eye with the avocado oil and cook over medium heat until cooked through. Season with the seven spices, salt and black pepper. Set aside.
  • Cut the pita bread into 2 inch squares using scissors or your hands. Toss with some oil (1/2 tb.) and cook in the air fryer for 3-4 minutes until golden brown and toasted. Shake every minute for even cooking.
  • In a small skillet, add the remaining 1 ½ tb. of avocado oil and sauté the pine nuts for 2 minutes until golden brown. Set aside in a small bowl.
  • Crush the 2 cloves of garlic using mortar and pestle or your preferred method, then add to a medium-sized bowl. Add the yogurt, tahini paste, salt, and cold water. Whisk thoroughly and set aside in the refrigerator to stay cold.
  • Drain the chickpeas and wash thoroughly. In a small skillet, warm the chickpeas with some water for about 5 minutes over medium heat. Drain the water and set aside to start layering the dish.
  • Layer the Eggplant Fatteh according to your preference.
    I start with warmed chickpeas, then the crispy pita chips, followed by the eggplant, sautéed beef, yogurt sauce and pine nuts. Lastly, I garnish with some chopped parsley and it is ready to eat! Enjoy!

Notes

Interested in the Air Fryer used for the recipe? Click here

Nutrition

Calories: 657kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 42g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 14.7g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 47mg | Sodium: 1043mg | Potassium: 764mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 127IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 196mg | Iron: 6mg

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    Recipe Reviews

    • Dimple Athavale

      4 stars
      Superb recipe…exactly how we have in few restaurants. I used protein bread instead of normal arabic bread and it turned out really tasty too. And for meat used chicken, but still was really nice

      • Iman

        Sounds delicious!! So glad you liked it.

    • Nahla

      The Fatta looks delicious! Love the step by step instructions and photos.Which air fryer do you use?

      • Iman

        Thank you!! I have the Ninja air-fryer, I love it. I have linked the exact model I have above in the paragraph “Air-fried eggplant and pita.”

    • salma dressl

      Hi

    • Dalia

      5 stars
      Superb dish Iman, thank you! Very true to ones you’ll have back home in Lebanon. I used almond chips instead of pine nuts, and didn’t use meat. It still came out delicious. I love the garlicky flavour in the yoghurt. Looking forward to trying your other recipes!

      • Iman

        I am so glad you enjoyed it!! Thank you

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