Vegetarian (and Vegan) Delights of NYC: The Broccoli Rabe Hero at Casa Calamari in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn


The vegan broccoli rabe hero at Casa Calamari is a massive dreadnought of a sandwich.

No vegetable is dearer to Sicilians. Broccoli rabe is the most substantial of greenery: chewy, nourishing, and possessed of a slightly bitter flavor that melds nicely with oil and garlic.

Casa Calamari is an old-time Sicilian focacceria, done up as a family restaurant. Broccoli rabe finds its way there into an amazing hero ($6) a full foot in length, and sufficient to satisfy two. The greens are heavily garlicked, and the sandwich oozes good olive oil.

The sandwich is fully vegan, as are several of the other vegetable and pasta preparations, including an excellent asparagus salad with a vinaigrette dressing, a simple plate of spaghetti marinara (hold the cheese), marinara pizza, fried zucchini, and escarole and beans. 8602 Third Avenue, Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, 718-921-1900

An octopus with too many arms is the mascot of Casa Calamari.

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