Market Umbrella is an independent nonprofit 501(c)(3), based in New Orleans, whose mission is to cultivate the field of public markets for public good. Market Umbrella has operated the Crescent City Farmers Markets (CCFM) since 1995.
Stovetop Eggplant with Harissa, Chickpeas, and Cumin Yogurt
Harissa is a spicy-smoky chili paste that’s widely used in North African cuisine. It works beautifully with eggplant and adds a rich tomato-y taste to any dish. Most grocery stores carry Harissa, but if you can’t find it, you can use tomato paste and chili peppers as a substitute. This one-pan dish makes for a meal that is hearty, delicious, and summery!
- 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- 5 to 6 small Italian eggplants, peeled and trimmed
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- ½ tablespoon harissa, plus more as desired
- 1 (15-oz) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 2 cups halved cherry tomatoes
- 1 1/2 cups 2% Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- ½ cup picked parsley leaves
Heat the oil in a 12-inch skillet over high heat until shimmering. Add the eggplants and lower the heat to medium. Season with salt and pepper as you rotate the eggplants, browning them on all sides. Continue to cook, turning regularly, until a fork inserted into the eggplant meets no resistance (you may have to stand them up on their fat end to finish cooking the thickest parts), about 20 minutes, lowering the heat and sprinkling water into the pan as necessary if the eggplants threaten to burn or smoke excessively.
Mix the harissa, chickpeas, and tomatoes together, then add to the eggplants. Cook until the tomatoes have blistered and broken down, about 5 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper and add water as necessary to thin to a saucy consistency. Meanwhile, combine the yogurt and cumin in a serving bowl. Season with salt and pepper.
Top the eggplant mixture with the parsley, drizzle with more extra virgin olive oil, and serve with the yogurt on the side.
The Crescent City Farmers Market operates weekly year-round in four New Orleans neighborhoods. The CCFM hosts nearly 80 local small farmers, fishers and food producers, and more than 100,000 shoppers annually.