Italian Recipes

Calamari with sun-dried tomatoes and olives

April 12, 2021

This is a dish I first enjoyed on the island of Sardinia. We took the ferry there and had a wonderful time traveling all over the island and dining on their specialties. Sardinia's cuisine is unique and as a small island, seafood is an integral part of it. Both my husband and I love seafood so we ordered it daily during our 10 day trip. We enjoyed an extensive seafood appetizer for lunch in a restaurant, and this dish was one of the items on the menu. I fell in love with this calamari dish at first sight as it was incredibly tender and full of flavor mixed with sun-dried tomatoes and olives.

Only a few carefully selected ingredients combine to create this delicious dish. This recipe can be doubled up for entertainment on an antipasto platter, or served on mixed greens for a light lunch. Since there are few ingredients in this recipe, choose the best quality you can find. Oil-wrapped sun-dried tomatoes have more flavor, and kalamata olives are good choices for flavorful black olives.

To make tender calamari, you need to cook them either quickly (boiled or fried) or long and slow (braised in sauce). I used the quick method because I was cooking my calamari for a salad and they only take about a minute to cook completely. To clean the calamari, just cut the head off, remove the wings and outer skin, pull out the cartilage and whatever is left in the tube. Then cut the tentacle section from the head, set the tentacles aside, and cut the calamari tubes into 1/2-inch rings. Drop in boiling water for a minute or two, then drain and rinse in cold water. This recipe is best prepared a few hours before serving to allow the flavors to develop.

Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele revised 2021


  • 4 medium calamari, cleaned (see notes above)

  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped

  • 1/3 cup oil-wrapped sun-dried tomatoes, drained and cut into thin strips

  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped kalamata olives

  • 3 tablespoons of fresh parsley leaves, finely chopped

  • 2 tablespoons of small capers, drained

  • 1 large lemon, juiced

  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

  • Salt & pepper to taste


  1. Drop the calamari into a saucepan of lightly salted boiling water and cook for 1 to 2 minutes.
  2. Drain and rinse under cold water.
  3. Mix calamari and other ingredients in a bowl.
  4. Try and match the spices.
  5. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for at least two hours before serving.
  6. Serve & enjoy!

Nutritional information:

Yield: 4th

Serving size: 1 cup

Amount per serving:

Calories: 557Total fat: 36 gSaturated fatty acids: 4gTrans fat: 0gUnsaturated fat: 29gCholesterol: 192 mgSodium: 505 mgCarbohydrates: 42 gFiber: 2gSugar: 0gProtein: 18g

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