About Chef Iggy
When I look back and think where this all began, I can only start with family.
Growing up the son of blue-collar, hard-working middle class parents. They themselves, the sons and daughters of Mexican immigrant parents, who first came to The United States to work the fields of California and apple orchards of northern Washington State. Their unique combination of lifestyle and customs provided the foundation of influence that would shape not only the way we ate, but spoke, conducted ourselves, our faith, our strong belief in The American Dream.
Our strong conviction that as Americans we are able to maintain our Mexican culture and express it freely in art, music, and cuisine. We are able to fuse that culture with that of the country that has provided so much opportunity and prosperity for our family. That unique blend has and will continue to serve as a vessel to bring about avenues for us to share this unique fusion with people everyday. A blend of the old traditions with that of the new. From this fusion our culinary vision began.
That unique fusion of Mexican and American culture is what inspired me to showcase this blend in my culinary journey. As a child I loved being in the kitchen with my mom and grandmother. Mostly because I got extra food, but in small part because I was amazed how they took individual ingredients and combined them to get something completely new.
To watch something being created from scratch in many pieces only to finish as one unique creation was amazing. Standing as one but made with many. The freedom and opportunity has always intrigued me. Even though my mother and grandmother always used the same techniques and usually made their dishes the same way, every once in a while you would see them change or adapt based on what was readily available to them. I remember the first time watching my grandmother making tamales and taking leftovers of my favorite thing to eat at the time (refried beans and rice) and making a few tamales just for me. I was hooked.
Up until then I figured it was always done the same way. It had to be spicy. It had rules. She showed me there were no rules. This looking back was the stepping stone for my love for food. It opened my mind to learn and try new cuisines from other parts of the country and the world. As a child and young adult trying to figure out what my path there has always been food. The one place that had no rules, the place I could escape too.
From this my culinary path was discovered. I've loved it since my first job ever working the concession stand at my local pool at age 12 till today almost 30 years later. From that little box at the pool, working with Chef Vito M learning the ropes in a real kitchen. Chopping onions and washing dishes at my aunt and uncle's Taco joints. Helping my parents open and run our Family's restaurant for 15 years, having the honor to present my culinary skills on national television to starting my own business . The whole journey, good bad and even ugly at times, has taught me to be who and what I am as a human being, creator and chef. From all this, the start, the struggle, the success; Tickle my Tamale and the E-Food Truck Platform was born.
I believe what really inspires me is that tamales, aside from being the perfect "to-go" dish, give me an avenue to share some really fun memories and culinary experiences growing up. The way everyone sat down and helped their part of the process in one form or another, keeping in mind how much work it actually was, everyone always seemed to be having fun. I wanted to bring that fun food and serious flavor to my community.
In the fast paced world we live in, it's harder and harder to share those types of moments with family and friends, our goal is to bring a small part of that family fun and bonding to our communities. We hope to accomplish this through our products.
Another major inspiration was the ability to take a perfect vessel (a tamale) and create any dish we want, from traditional flavors, to the flavors of the world. We have no limits. No rules.
Tickle My Tamale also gave us an opportunity to change the way food is served. I am able to express my vision of clean sustainable food service and in doing so help create a cleaner better environment for our communities to thrive and enjoy ourselves in.
Our focus is on people and products. Our goal is to be able to serve our community as efficiently as possible, never sacrificing the quality of our products. Our goal is to empower others, to share in our vision and offer our culinary creations to the world. By harnessing the power of electricity and innovation, we can change the efficiency of our systems, from processing our dishes, to delivering them. We can make the process faster, fresher, environmentally friendly and sustainable to lower our cost to our consumers without sacrificing quality, flavor, or our environment.
We strive to ensure to give our customers the highest quality, most flavorful dishes, their time and money deserve.