We love customer testimonials

Deb,

Just wanted you to know that my dinner guests last night RAVED about Howard’s baguette. I heated in oven at 350 for 10 minutes and the loaf came out with golden crispy crust and tender interior - just perfect.

AND the organic lemons were probably the BEST I’ve ever had - so big and gorgeously shaped too! What a treat. 

I made a baked shrimp scampi last night and the lemons were an outstanding part of this garlicky dish. Attached picture just prior to putting dish in oven.




The scampi with Howards’s bread to dip in the lemon-butter-wine sauce was divine!!

Thank you ever so much!

Kim

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Up Your Food Game




Up Your Food Game
for the Whole Family’s Sake

Author: Kristin Louis



It’s not just about keeping trim. If you don’t eat healthy, you risk the following: fatigue, decreased concentration, memory loss, high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes and premature death. That should be enough to scare you, especially if you’re in charge of what the kids are eating.  

Now look on the bright side: Getting enough nutrients gives them energy as well as a strong heart, sharper brain, less stress and a longer life. Feel better now? That’s great because it’s time to get down to action. Here’s what you need to do to tap into the benefits of nutrition.

Research the Basics

You can’t eat healthy unless you know what’s healthy, and that’s not easy when the media are packed with dieting fads and rumors of the latest superfood. Luckily, a nutritionist has narrowed it down to 10 rules and shared them with readers of the One Medical blog. They include loading up on vegetables and not starving yourself, as that only comes back to bite you.


Hit the Farmers Market

There aren’t many places better than the farmer’s market to find the nutritious ingredients you’re looking for. Produce, meats, dairy, and bread that are locally grown, raised, harvested, and made are better for you. They contain less of the bad stuff, like pesticides and hormones, but that’s not the only advantage. Buying locally will allow you to eat your food when it the absolute freshest, ensuring it has the most possible nutrients and benefits for your body. Supermarket foods that are picked, preserved, and shipped just can’t make that claim. 

Shop Strategically

Not filling your basket with sweets and snacks can be tough, but there are some tactics to adopt to ensure only the good stuff comes home with you. First, have a bite to eat to avoid temptation, and then arm yourself with a list and the discipline to follow it. If you are having trouble finding all the items you’re looking for at the farmer’s market, but you still want to shop local, consider a co-op service. These organizations source a variety of ingredients from local farmers and deliver it to your door. Not only do you get a wider variety of the wholesome foods you want, it’s more convenient too!

Buy Probiotic

These contain helpful bacterial that improve the absorption of nutrients and give the immune system a boost. They include fermented foods such as sauerkraut, pickles and yoghurt along with apple cider vinegar and kombucha. You’ll also need plenty of prebiotic, which differs from probiotics in that it’s fermented in the large intestine but has the same positive effects on your gut. Garlic, onion and soybeans are all good sources.


Improve Your Cooking

Did you know that you can make decadent, creamy sauces without all the fat? All it takes is mixing low-fat milk with some flour, which makes for a great fettuccine alfredo, and that’s just one of the tips from EatingWell that help you live it up without regretting it. You may also want to replace salt with a combination of lemon and chopped herbs. 

Get the Kids Involved

It’d be a shame not to pass down those techniques and others you’ve learned in the kitchen, and the only way to do that is putting the little ones to work. Don’t worry; they take easy to imitating adults, and there’s plenty for them to do beginning at the tender age of 2. To boot, dinner will be ready in no time with all hands on deck.


Eat Together

According to an article in Time magazine, families that gather for dinner are healthier. Kids benefit the most as they pack in more fruits, vegetables, fiber, calcium and vitamins when their parents are at the table, while giving a pass to junk food. However, it provides a forum for everyone to interact and that means a more supportive social environment overall.


Grow a Garden

If you really want to kick healthy eating into high gear, this is the way to go. After all, you can’t say “no” to vegetables you’ve grown yourself, so into the salad they go. Meanwhile, the kids get an important lesson on the life cycle of plants and the importance of sunlight, water and healthy soil to your well-being. 

Once these become ingrained in your everyday life, you won’t even have think about eating healthy. It’ll be the norm. Best yet, your children will grow up and pass on the lessons they’ve learned to your grandchildren.


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How to get kids to eat veggies!


How You Can Get Your Children
to Eat Their Vegetables

Article written by Kristin Louis




Have you ever struggled to get your children to eat their vegetables? They may have recoiled and downright refused to eat them, but don't be discouraged. Thankfully, there are many ways you can help create a positive relationship between your children and healthy vegetables.





Integrate the Vegetables


Let's face it: Some kids may never be able to enjoy vegetables on their own. However, the great thing about vegetables is that they can be incorporated into just about any type of delicious meal. Even smoothies can be an effective way to give our children their daily dose of nutrient-rich vegetables. Experiment as much as you can, as you may hit upon combinations perfect for your children. Try different styles and look to enhance flavor by using ingredients like brown sugar and butter. Also, take advantage of their favorite foods. Are they passionate about pizza, muffins, or brownies? There's always a way you can integrate some vegetables into them. Be sure to start off slowly with the amount you add, and it may actually be a good idea to tell your children about their inclusion. It's a creative strategy that may be the beginning of a meaningful relationship between your children and vegetables.


Set an Example

Children look up to their parents. As symbols of model behavior, we can encourage positive emulation through self-precedent. After all, children by their nature often respond better to what we do rather than what we say. Simply telling our children that vegetables are healthy generally doesn’t work. Children feel perfectly invincible, and matters of health may seem quite irrelevant. Often, when we keep badgering our children, there's an unfortunate tendency for their resolve to resist our wishes to strengthen. Show your enthusiasm for vegetables. Make them a central part of your meals that your kids can see you enjoy during family dinners. As parents, we can be sources of inspiration, as well as agents of positive change, in our children's eating habits.

Involve Them

Giving children a role in choosing and preparing their meals can nurture a sense of investment in their food. Being able to see their choices mature into a whole meal can also foster excitement and enthusiasm. You could either start by having them pick out vegetables first or build around vegetable-rich recipes they choose. At the grocery store, you may find that a child won't instinctually opt for vegetables, especially if they are very young. If that's the case, try to gently guide them towards vegetables and give them choices they can select from. Recipe pictures can be an effective tool in enhancing their appeal, particularly if they are bright and colorful. Whichever comes first, ingredients or recipe, you may find that involving your kids can persuade even the pickiest of eaters to at least give vegetables a try.

Head to the Farmers Market

Another way to involve your children is by taking them to a farmers market. This is a great opportunity for an educational family outing that may get your little ones excited about eating healthier food. There can be such a diverse range of vegetables, interesting and unusual, of every imaginable type and color. A farmers market is a perfect environment to teach children about the origins of vegetables and to see just how vibrant healthy food can be. What’s more, your children can even meet the people who produce their food. By visiting a market often, you can nurture a positive association with vegetables.

Introducing our children to vegetables may take effort and patience. Be an inspiration and involve your children in the process of discovering vegetables they like. Don't be afraid to experiment and try various approaches and recipes. Eventually, you may find that your children grow not only to appreciate vegetables, but they might truly enjoy them.

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Meet the Farmers at Cecarelli Farms


Cecarelli Farms has been in the family for 106 years. The Cecarelli brothers came from Italy to grow vegetables, they found the perfect property in Northford that was for sale. The owners were using it for raise some cows and had planted a few fruit trees. Even in those days there was prejudice against immigrants - back then it was the Italians or the Irish; they were refused the sale. A family friend, a doctor, stepped up and purchased the property for them and the brothers worked the farm together for many years. Raising their families here, each generation kept the farm going.

Nelson Cecarelli
Nelson Cecarelli inherited the farm after his grandfather after he past and worked the farm along with his very successful insurance business since 2002 along with Will Dellacamera. Nelson had taken Will in as a partner three years ago. Will started working at the farm when he was 17 years old during the summers while he attended SUNI in New York, he graduated with a agricultural engineering. Nelson past away this year after battling cancer, leaving the farm to be run by his widow and Dellacamera.   
On the farms 100th year anniversary Nelson was interview as "Meet your Farmer" and a video was made with Nelson talking about the farm and you can see the hard work he and Will accomplished in the short time they had together, he is missed at the farm... Here's the video link:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EOkVDIbKpHc


Will Dellacamera
You can tell Will loves farming, he's a hands-on boss, doesn't just sit around giving orders, he is part of the farm from start to finish. He starts by planning out what seed to purchase each year and decides which fields to grow them in, he manages about 15 to17 workers each day,  makes his own deliveries and you can find him in the fields checking on the plants. He is very involved in the day to day needs of this 200+ acre farm, and it shows.

Will showed me where he plans on expanding the strawberry patch, and where he plans on growing blueberries and raspberries next year. 
They have a farm stand down the hill from the fields by the road and you can find many fresh vegetables available daily. They also sell CSA shares for the weekly pickup at the farm.
I had a nice time hanging out with Will that morning and I hope this helps you see the face behind the products that you purchase from us. We have his non-gmo corn, green beans, carrots and tomatoes available at our store in East Haddam and online for home delivery or pickup. ctfarmfreshstore.com
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When is Fresh Really Fresh?

What’s your definition of fresh? Picked that day? Yesterday? How do you know what’s fresh means when you go to, say, Whole Foods, Walmart or Stop & Shop? Where do they get their “organic” food from? Is it from China, Peru, California or is it coming from the state you live in? What are the “organic” practices in other countries? Who’s watching across the pond and what standard do they follow? We should all be aware of where and how our food is grown. In the dead of winter will do purvey organic produce from California and sometimes South America, because who can live without coffee and avocado's?  

My definition of fresh and local food is simple: to me fresh is walking out to your back yard and grabbing a few veggies or herbs from the garden, eggs from your chickens, and berries from your bushes. The advent of the “Eat Local” and “Farm to Table” movements have been made popular by celebrity chefs and social media and have forced big agriculture and big box stores to jump on the bandwagon or be left behind. But they only make things blurry with their claims of freshness and local!

I am not sure how the big box stores get away with using the terms "fresh" and "local" together. These stores have a system of moving food that takes time. When it reaches your home, it’s been around awhile, and has lost a lot of it’s nutritional value, which in my view is more important than being certified organic. Big supermarkets are moving large quantities of product all over the state and sometimes the country. They store in warehouses and they ship to different stores, from there the store managers place it on the shelves and you come in and buy it. So fresh doesn’t mean the same thing to everyone. Fresh to them may be 3-4 days old or longer. At the end of the day how do you really know? 

Fresh without the fuss…and knowing its always fresh, always local. 

Connecticut Farm Fresh Express (CTFFE) has been gathering local and fresh foods for over 10 years and delivering it to doors of homes, stores and restaurants all over the state. We began the business and remain motivated by the desire to help our local farmers remain viable and sustainable, by offering  another avenue to distribute their products. We choose our farmers and vendors with a lot of care. We search for farmers that look to have nutrient-dense soil - no need to be “certified organic” as long as they follow organic growing methods. The livestock farms need to provide an area for free-range, grass-fed and the animals need to be able to roam around and not be kept in a small pen without the ability to access pastures if they want.

Is our FRESH your FRESH? We hope so!

At (CTFFE), we know it’s hard for working couples and parents to even get to a grocery store let alone a farm or farmers market. Pea Pod has a thriving home delivery business for big agriculture food companies. We decided to bring the farmers market to your door all year long. We publish what products from farmers and artisans will have for us and we make it available on our online store. ctfarmfreshstore.com Items change weekly and with the seasons. Once a week we send our team out to those farms and bring fresh food back to our facility in East Haddam, where we collate and package orders for delivery the following day. 

We will be opening our warehouse to the public, daily from 9-5 except Wednesdays... 24 Mount Parnassus Road, East Haddam - COME IN AND SEE US!

The benefits of eating local are myriad: fresh, environmentally sound, healthy, supports local economies, tastes better, and it’s the right thing to do!

Deb Marsden, Founder of CT Farm Fresh Express, LLC


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