Cecina de León is one of the most famous spanish smoked ham from beef, produced in León, north-west of Spain. The first written references to the dried beef Cecina de León is dated back to the 4th century BC. However, the Asturs, the first inhabitants of north- east Spain prior to the arrival of the Roman Empire, were the first to cure the meat as Cecina. Commerce, transportation at the time, and food traditions provided the perfect circumstances for this highly nutritious dried beef to become the perfect food for the local muleteers (maragatos) during their long journeys across the Iberian Peninsula. Cecina recipe has been passed down through generations in maragatos families, and travelled with them from Asturs to León. Cecinas Nieto is a family business founded in 1965 by José Nieto Blas, the descendent of a family of muleteers from la Maragateria - a district in the eastern part of León. Today the company is located in Astorga, west of León, in the region of Castilla y León. Managed by José Luis Nieto, it is still a family business, with 7 employees. Using just beef, salt, smoke and a long and delicate curing process to produce the best Cecina for the most refined palates.