Cover a large plate with unbleached coffee filters. (4 cone-shaped filters fit a dinner plate perfectly, but you could also use two round filters, stacked; see notes below for more options.) Toss the eggplant in a bowl with a little salt, and arrange it on top of the filters. Microwave for about 8 minutes, while proceeding with the rest of the recipe. (Note: You can skip this step and sauté the eggplant along with the onion. Allow additional cooking time as needed to fully cook eggplant.)
Sauté the onion in a large non-stick pot until it begins to brown, adding a little water if necessary to prevent sticking. Add the garlic, and cook for another minute. Add all spices, including cinnamon stick, and stir for another minute. Add the zucchini, canned tomatoes, chickpeas, raisins, and vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and add the eggplant and cherry tomatoes. Cover and cook on low while quinoa is cooking.
Heat a medium-sized nonstick pot. Add the rinsed quinoa, and cook, stirring, for a few minutes until the quinoa is fairly dry. Add the vegetable broth and garlic, bring to a boil, reduce heat, and cover. Cook until quinoa absorbs all of the water, about 15 minutes. (If quinoa is tender and doesn’t seem to absorb all the water, remove the cover and turn up the heat for a few minutes.)
Remove cinnamon stick. Spread a bed of quinoa on each plate and top with ragout.
If you can find paper towels that are certified okay for microwaving (some contain metal fibers, so beware) just use a double layer of them instead of coffee filters. A dish towel (not terrycloth) or double layer of cheesecloth would also probably work. I’d stay away from parchment paper because I don’t think it is absorbent enough.