Okra and Calamari Farfalle

I have always liked farfalle or bowtie pasta as they look so pretty. I like to use them in salads as seen in my Rainbow-tie Salad. Recently, I came across these very colorful bowties. I had to do a double take as I could not believe my eyes. These bowties are so pretty and colorful. One would assume that such colors could only be possible with artificial food coloring but on reading the label, I was delighted to discover that it was all natural. The yellow color is achieved using turmeric, the black from squid ink, and the magenta from beets. These bowties are made in Italy. I had to get a bag as I was curious about the taste and what it would look like after being cooked.

I wanted to make a sauce that will enhance the ingredients used to color the pasta. Of the three colors, I figured that the color of the beet will probably not hold as fast as the other two. As such, I felt that a spicy calamari sauce would complement the turmeric and squid ink in the pasta. Okra which goes well with peppers and calamari, will provide the much needed green color for the dish. Lemon juice will give added zing.

Okra and Calamari Farfalle

When cooked, the beet colored portion of pasta did fade to a rosy pink color. The pasta has a mild turmeric flavor and just a very slight hint of squid when boiled. The calamari and okra provided texture and the spicy and tangy sauce made this Okra and Calamari Farfalle very appetizing.

Okra and Calamari Farfalle

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Okra and Calamari Farfalle


  • ½ lb (225g) farfalle (bowtie pasta)
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ lb (225g) okra, sliced cross wise
  • ½ lb (225g) calamari or squid, sliced into bite sized pieces
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup (150g) grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice


Cook pasta as per packaging instructions. Drain and set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in pan. Sear okra slices for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove and set aside.

Add another tablespoon olive oil into pan. When pan is really hot, add calamari and cook for about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Calamari will turn opaque and curl. Remove and set aside.

Add the remaining 2 tablespoon olive oil in pan. Sauté garlic until fragrant. Add pepper flakes and tomatoes and cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Add pasta and gently stir to mix. Season with salt and pepper. Turn off heat.

Return cooked okra and calamari to the pan. Pour in lemon juice. Toss, remove, and serve immediately.


Okra and Calamari Farfalle

Enjoy…..and have a wonderful day! 8-)