In The Beginning

My Story

I've always been surrounded by great tasting food.  Mom was a magician in the kitchen.  Making some of the best meals ever prepared for her family - Dad and six kids.  As I look back, we didn't appreciate her as much as we do now. And then there are the two Grandmas.  Oy!  Food prepared to perfection every time. The saying is true: Nobody can cook as good as Grandma.

But then there was also food cooking outside on the grill.  While Dad's best was always good, it was his brother Beto who was the King of the Grill.  And of course, the deep pit.

As you see I have been eating incredible food, for as far back as I can remember.  With the flavors imbedded in my taste buds, I wanted to recreate what my Grandmothers used to make.  Oh they are now cooking up their specialties for God, but their flavor inspirations have never ceased to be with us here.  

And after watching Uncle Beto make his specialties on the grill, I began to pick up some of his tricks.  From then on I pushed myself to imitate the flavors created by the grill masters who had inspired me.  I decided to make my own seasoning for carne asada, conveniently all in one bottle. I wouldn't have to get out so many things, forget one, or run out of a particular ingredient.  It didn't take long for me to perfect my carne asada seasoning.

In preparing for a BBQ, I realized I would need a larger cutting board than I already had.  But good quality cutting boards were a little pricey and not big enough.  So I took some scrap white oak and made my own custom cutting board. It worked great.  Soon others wanted me to make them their own custom board, and the Tio Leo's landfill-friendly cutting board was born.

Then came along the Food Network and their coverage of the BBQ festival, known as "Memphis in May."  And my quest was on to make a BBQ pork rub that would put a smile on everyone’s face (along with some BBQ sauce).  It took two years of doing BBQs, cookouts and so on until I felt I perfected my pork dry rub.

Along the way, I also created my fish and seafood seasoning.  I used my favorite Tri-tip rub as a starter, tweaked the ingredients, and made my own steak seasoning.  While in the forest of Siberia my brother-in-law showed me how to make Russian Shashlik (Shish kabob). This stuff was amazing and he showed me everything he did.  And of course my Shashlik seasoning was born right then and there.  Inspired by some baked chicken from a food store giant, my chicken spice came together.

Since then I wanted an all-purpose spice in a couple of heat levels.  That's when I created my Private Reserve Collection.  In Regular (mild), Extra (hot), and Heavy (oy!).  But don't limit yourself, use whatever spice on whatever protein, carb or vegetable you like.  You can even put it on ice cream! (No, it's not a joke, try the carne asada seasoning on chocolate ice cream).

So there you have it, the origin of Tio Leo's Cutting Boards and Seasonings. They are a favorite in many homes.  How about yours?


Tio Leo

© 2016 Duarte Systems. All Rights Reserved. Design By Leojduarte