Start the rice (in whatever fashion you choose).
Premix the spices in to a small bowl.
the oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat.
Add the onion and cook,
stirring occasionally, until softened, 4 to 6 minutes.
the tomatoes, eggplant, spice mixture. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
Add 1 1/2 cups water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, until eggplant is tender, 12 to 15 minutes.
Stir in the chickpeas and cook just until heated through, about 3 minutes.
the vegetables from heat and stir in the basil. Fluff the rice with a
fork. Serve the vegetables over the rice with yogurt, if using.