Our Produce, Products and Ripening Calendar

Like any family farm, Cecarelli Farms is vulnerable to adverse events in the weather and other systems that affect our crops. That said, here is a list of our produce, a description of each and the dates you can generally expect it to be available during the Connecticut ripening season, typically from the end of May through the end of October.

 

Strawberries

Considered one of the most nutrient dense fruits available, strawberries are an excellent source of Vitamin C, antioxidants and dietary fiber. They also provide trace amts. of Vitamins A, B-Complex, E and K and trace amts. of minerals such Iron, Zinc and Potassium, all for only 49, fat-free, and cholesterol-free calories per cup serving. These berries are best consumed raw on their own, in salads and smoothies
or can be prepared into various desserts and condiments.

Typically Available: Late May-June

Lettuce

Lettuce comes in a number of varieties that fit into four general categories; butterhead, crisphead, looseleaf and romaine. Lettuce contains high amounts of vitamins and minerals in a tasty low-calorie vegetable that can be enjoyed in numerous ways. Lettuce is the base for most salads and most types can also be boiled, braised or sautéed.

Typically Available: May 30-July 10

Arugula

Arugula is a vegetable of Mediterranean origin that is characterized by its green leafy texture and pungent, peppery and slightly smoky flavor. Also referred to as salad or garden rocket, arugula is a low-calorie vegetable that is rich in vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants and phytonutrients. Arugula is a healthy addition to salads, sandwiches and burgers of all types.

Typically Available: May 30-July 10

Spinach

Spinach is a great source of vitamins A and C as well as calcium, iron, dietary fiber and potassium. As with any vegetable, it is most nutritious if eaten raw or juiced. Spinach is great in salads either on its own or as a complement to lettuce and can be used to add flavor to omelets, stir fries and other cooked dishes such as lasagna.

Typically Available: May 30-July 10

Swiss Chard

Swiss Chard is part of the beet family and comes in three varieties; green stalk, red stalk and multi-color stalk. Like spinach, Chard is an excellent source of vitamins A and C as well as vitamin K, vitamin B complex and several other nutrients. Chard can be sliced or cooked whole and generally tastes better steamed rather than boiled. Because it is extremely perishable, Chard should be used as soon as possible after harvesting.

Typically Available: June-September

Bunched Beets

Beets are tuberous root vegetables with broad dark green leaves. They are a great source of vitamins A, C, Iron and Riboflavin and are believed to be helpful in lowering cholesterol and improving cardiovascular health. They can be prepared in a variety of ways; such as being added to salads, juiced, baked, boiled or grated.

Typically Available: June-September

Green Peas

Green peas are among the healthiest leguminous vegetables with high concentrations of vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants and phytonutrients. Green peas are low in calories, contain no cholesterol and are a great source of protein as well as insoluble fiber. They are prepared in a wide variety of dishes as a complement to other vegetables such as corn, potatoes, carrots and onions.

Typically Available: June 15-July 10

Sugar Snap Peas

Sugar snap peas are different than green peas in that consumers cook and eat the entire pod. They are lower in calories than green peas and are rich in vitamins A, C, B complex, K, folic acid and many other vitamins and minerals. Raw sugar snap peas are a great addition to salads, and they can also be stir-fried with other vegetables or sautéed and served with meats such as chicken, duck and seafood.

Typically Available: June 15-July 10

Green Cabbage

Green cabbage is a round vegetable with darker and paler green leaves on the outside and whiter leaves as you peel your way to the center. They are high in vitamin C and are best served raw in salad or boiled, stir-fried or braised. They can also serve as a wrap for meats for those on a low-carb diet.

Typically Available: June 20-October

Red Cabbage

Red cabbage is similar in shape to green cabbage with ruby red to deep purple leaves on the outside. It has a slightly tougher texture than the green variety and contains more vitamin C per serving. As with green cabbage, it makes a great addition to salads or boiled, stir-fried, braised or as a meat wrap.

Typically Available: June 20-October

Savoy Cabbage

Savoy cabbage is spherical shaped with a crinkled texture and yellowish green leaves. It has a milder flavor than the other types of cabbage and works well as a salad base or shredded in coleslaw.

Typically Available: June 20-October

Pak Choi

Pak Choi, also known as Bok Choi, is one of the most popular vegetables in Asia and is widely used in oriental dishes. It is similar in texture to collard greens and provides a rich source for numerous vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants and phytonutrients.

Typically Available: June 20-September

String Beans

String beans, also known as green beans or snap beans, are a firm yet tender and flexible pod plant chock full of valuable nutrients. They are low in calories, contain no saturated fat and are high in vitamins A, B complex and C and minerals such as iron, potassium, calcium, magnesium and manganese. They are also a great source of dietary fiber. String beans go well in stir fries, grilled salads, stews and various steamed vegetable dishes.

Typically Available: June 20-September

Cucumbers (and Pickles)

Cucumbers are among the world’s oldest and easiest to grow plants. They are very low in calories (only around 15 per 100 grams) while providing a plethora of essential vitamins and nutrients; most notably vitamins A, C, K and potassium. This bright colored vegetable can be sliced up and added to any salad or juiced (skin on) as part of a nutritious vegetable juice drink. They can also be pickled in vinegar, brine or a similar solution and fermented for a period time to become pickles.

Typically Available: July 1-September

Summer Squash

The most common summer squash in Connecticut is golden zucchini. This vegetable features a yellowish to golden skin that keeps its color even after you cook it. Golden zucchini is a low-calorie fruit (only 17 calories per 100 grams) that is high in several essential nutrients as well as dietary fiber and is believed to be helpful in preventing colon cancer. Zucchinis can be added to salads or mixed alongside vegetables in stir fries. Its pods can also be baked, fried, boiled or steamed or even used as a stuffing.

Typically Available: June 20-September

Winter Squash

The most common winter squash in Connecticut is butternut squash. Butternut squash is a pear shaped fruit with a smooth ribbed skin. It is higher in calories than zucchini (45 calories per 100 grams) but still contains no saturated fats or cholesterol. Butternut squash has a light, nutty flavor and a pleasantly sweet taste. It can be steamed, baked or stew fried and is often used in pies, bread mixes, muffins, pancakes and casseroles.

Typically Available: September 15-October

Basil

Basil is a small herbal plant that is brimming with health benefits. Basil contains high levels of vitamins A and K, and numerous essential minerals as well as anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial oils such as citronellol, linalool, eugenol and citral. Basil is thought to play a pivotal role in preventing various diseases and maintaining optimal health. The best part; basil is great as a flavoring addition to traditional Italian dishes such as spaghetti and pizza.

Typically Available: July 1-September

Cilantro

Cilantro is an herb with long stems and tiny green leaves that are often mistaken for parsley. Cilantro is a popular Mediterranean herb with high amounts of vitamins, anti-oxidants and essential oils. It is believed that cilantro is helpful in reducing bad (LDL) cholesterol while raising your levels of good (HDL) cholesterol. Cilantro can be used with other household herbs to enhance the flavor of numerous dishes. It has also been used for several centuries as a medicinal herb.

Typically Available: July 1-September

Sweet Corn

Sweet corn, as its name indicates, has a sweeter, more sugary flavor than field corn. It is somewhat high in calories for a vegetable (86 calories per 100 grams), but that is still significantly lower than field corn. Sweet corn is also gluten free and all in all one of the healthiest ways to get the necessary carbohydrates you need to maintain your energy. Sweet corn is delicious in a variety of settings and can be eaten on the cob or with the kernels shredded and mixed together with other vegetables.

Typically Available: July 16-mid-October

Peppers

Cecarelli Farms carries a wide variety of peppers; including bell peppers, jalapeno peppers, cherry hot peppers, cubanelle peppers and poblano peppers. Bell peppers are among the most popular in the pepper family with a relatively mild flavor and coming in multiple colors such as green, red, yellow and orange. Peppers are chock full of several key vitamins and minerals and are thought to have disease preventing properties. Bell peppers make a great addition to salads, stir fries and other vegetable dishes or they can be eaten raw or juiced. If you want a little more spiciness in your food, you may opt for jalapeno, cherry hot or one of the other peppers.

Typically Available: June 25-September

Eggplant (including Italian and Oriental)

Our eggplants come in the Italian and Oriental variety. Eggplant is low in calories (24 per 100 grams) and high in fiber (9% of RDA per 100 grams), making it ideal for those trying to lose a few pounds. Eggplant also contains high amounts of vitamin B-complex and is a great source of minerals such as iron, potassium and manganese. Eggplant can be boiled or fried up as a tasty appetizer or included in numerous other vegetable dishes.

Typically Available: July 25-September

Tomatoes

Cecarelli Farms is known throughout Connecticut for our wide variety of fresh tomatoes. They form the basis for the jarred tomatoes we sell at our farm stands as well as our tasty sugar and preservative-free salsa and crushed tomatoes. When in season, you can choose from round slicer, plum, cherry, grape and heirloom tomatoes. They are a great source of vitamins A & C and make great additions to your salads or cooked up alongside other vegetables in dishes such as omelets.

Typically Available: July 30-September

Salsa and Crushed Tomatoes

Cecarelli Farms is proud to offer a tomato salsa in 16oz jars and crushed tomatoes in 32oz jars. Both products are made locally specially for us, in small batches using our freshest farm grown produce. There are no artificial colorings, flavorings added. These products are available at our Farm Stand and the Farmer’s Markets we attend.

Typically Available: Starting in August while supplies last.

Fava Beans

Fava beans are long, light green pods that are flat in texture and usually eaten shelled because the thick, broad cover is very difficult to digest. Fava beans are a great source of protein and contain several other essential vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants. They contain high amounts of vitamins B-6, thiamin (B-1), niacin and riboflavin as well as minerals such as calcium, iron, copper and manganese. They are also a rich source of fiber (66% of RDA per 100 grams). Fava beans can be included in all types of salads, soups, stews, stir fries and other such dishes.

Typically Available: June 20-July 15

Cranberry Beans

Cranberry beans, also referred to as “shell beans”, are long pods with pale red streaks on the outside and white beans on the inside. They are another great source of protein and fiber and contain high amounts of essential minerals such as zinc, potassium, copper, manganese, magnesium, phosphorous and iron. Cranberry beans are believed to be helpful in lowering cholesterol, controlling blood sugar and decreasing your risk of heart disease.

Typically Available: July 15-September

Lima Beans

Lima beans are light green with smaller pods than the fava and cranberry variety. Despite the smaller size and generally softer texture, they should still be eaten shelled. Lima beans are an excellent source of protein and fiber and contain essential vitamins and minerals such as B-complex, folates, potassium, iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese and copper. They have a delicious beany flavor that makes a great addition to virtually any salad or vegetable dish.

Typically Available: August 10-September

Broccoli

Broccoli is part of the cabbage family with a thick green stem and nutritious green flower head. Broccoli is a low calorie vegetable (34 calories per 100 grams) with high amounts of fiber and numerous essential vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. It is a great source of vitamins A, C, K, B-complex and minerals such as calcium, zinc, iron, manganese, magnesium, selenium and phosphorous. Broccoli heads can be eaten in a number of ways; raw as a snack, in salads, cooked up in numerous dishes alongside other vegetables or juiced (stem included).

Typically Available: September-October

Cauliflower

Cauliflower, also sometimes referred to as “cabbage flower”, is another highly nutritious member of the cabbage family. It contains a thick, white flower head with a partial green wrapping. Cauliflower is even lower in calories than broccoli (26 per 100 grams) and contains high amounts of vitamins C, B-complex and K as well as minerals such as potassium, copper, manganese, calcium and iron. Like broccoli, cauliflower can be eaten raw as a snack, added to salad and cooked up alongside other vegetables. It is not quite as easy to juice as broccoli, but if you wanted to get a little daring, you could try blending it with other vegetables as part of a healthy blended veggie drink.

Typically Available: September-October

Kale

Kale is a green, leafy plant with rich colors and rough edges. Kale is rich in numerous vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants; including vitamins A, C, B-complex and K and potassium, calcium, copper, iron, manganese, phosphorous and sodium. Kale is highly versatile and can be eaten raw, used as a garnish, added to salads, cooked alongside other vegetables or juiced.

Typically Available: June-October

Onions

Onions add wonderful flavor to our favorite Italian dishes and numerous other ethnic dishes. Onions are relatively low in calories (40 per 100 gram serving) and contain high amounts of vitamin C and B-complex as well as minerals such as chromium and manganese. They can be chopped or sliced and eaten raw in salads or on burgers and sandwiches as a spicy garnish. They can also be cooked up within stir fries or in soups, stews, casseroles and other such dishes.

Typically Available: August-October 15

Potatoes

Potatoes are starchy root vegetables with a round shape, cream-colored skin and a white inside. Potatoes are high in carbohydrates and a rich source of vitamin C and various minerals, starches and dietary fiber. Potatoes are a staple in many households and can be prepared in numerous ways including baked, boiled, steamed, mashed, fried or dehydrated and turned into chips. Skin-on or peeled, potatoes are versatile and are a great addition to virtually any meal.

Typically Available: August 15-October 15