La Vera Cucina

Calamari e Rucola

To help Linguine’s Italian Restaurant in Bowmansville, NY, stand out from the crowd, owner and chef Vinny Desiderio specializes in gourmet quality dishes, especially those highlighting traditional Old Country ingredients like fresh dandelion greens, fresh artichokes (for stuffing), fresh arugula, etc.

Here, Vinny shares a favorite family recipe for Calamari e Rucola (Calamari and Arugula), featuring contrasting flavors, textures, and even temperatures. Vinny’s Calamari e Rucola features sautéed fresh calamari, dressed in a simple chickpea and caper sauce, and served over a cool bed of peppery, crisp baby arugula. (Fresh calamari is not always easy to get, but Vinny says the superior flavor is well worth the effort!)



  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic
  • 5 ounces fresh calamari rings and tentacles
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon dry white wine
  • 1 teaspoon butter
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 12 garbanzo beans (canned: drained and rinsed)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons capers
  • 1 1/2 cups baby arugula leaves


Heat olive oil in medium skillet over medium heat. Add garlic; sauté until fragrant and just beginning to turn golden. Add fresh calamari. Sauté 3 minutes. Add lemon juice and wine. Add butter; stir to melt. Gradually stir in cream and heat gently. Stir in beans and capers. Serve immediately over bed of fresh baby arugula.

Makes 1 serving.