Next Accelerator – Neat Profile

Recently, Phil was interviewed by the Next Accelerator in their Entrepreneur Profile series.

What was the inspiration for your business? What inspires you daily?

Neat-Portraits-103Solving a protein problem for our little animal loving girls. They enjoyed the smell and flavor of meat but didn’t want to eat animals anymore. My wife has favored a vegetarian diet for years, and I was the lone hold-out until a routine physical in 2011 yielded a total cholesterol count of over 300. My grandfather died of a heart attack at age 40, so I had a family history of heart disease. My doctor encouraged me to cut down on red meat so we were all driven to go meatless for different reasons. All the mock-meats on the market seemed to be full of chemicals, so my wife developed something we could all enjoy.

What inspires me daily is connecting with people and making a difference in their lives; even if it’s simply making them feel better about what they’re eating. Neat has sixty percent less saturated fat than ground beef and tastes great. It’s not hard to sell something you’re passionate about. After going beef-free myself, my cholesterol dropped by over 100 points, I lost 30 pounds and I felt great.

Click here for the full interview.

Neat-est Dish – Top 3 Entries

Last week we unveiled the winning dish – neat Mini Pastry Pies!

Let’s show some love to the next top 3 dishes (in no specific order).

neat Chips by Kelly Loke

neat Chips 1 - Kelly Loke neat Chips - Kelly Loke

Yield: 6 to 8 servings (as a snack)

Ingredients:

  1. 1 pack of your favorite neat
  2. 2 tablespoons neat egg
  3. 6 tablespoons water
  4. Pinch of sea salt
  5. 2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  6. Dusting of gluten free flour or regular flour

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. Mix neat, neat egg and water in a mixing bowl until well combined.
  3. Cut 2 pieces of parchment paper the size of your baking sheet plus about an inch of border.
  4. Using a spatula, spread neat as evenly as you can over 1 piece of parchment paper.
  5. Dust 2nd piece of parchment paper with some gluten free flour (or regular flour). Place parchment paper over neat mixture and using a rolling pin, roll out neat mixture as thin as you can. Keeping it within the margins of the size of your baking sheet.
  6. Gently remove the top parchment paper.
  7. Sprinkle sea salt and brush with olive oil.
  8. Place flattened neat (still on parchment paper) onto baking sheet and bake in oven for 20-25 minutes until golden and crispy.
  9. Once done, remove from oven, let cool before breaking it into dip-size pieces.
  10. Enjoy it with your favorite dip!

 

Neatest Stuffed Shells by Pam Correll

shells 2
Vegetarian
Serves 5

6 ounces jumbo shell pasta (1/2 box)
1 (5.5 ounce) package neat Italian Mix
2 tablespoons neat Egg
6 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons olive oil
¼ cup chopped onion
1 cup cottage cheese
½ cup Parmesan cheese
24 ounces marinara sauce
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Boil jumbo shells according to package directions.

While pasta is cooking, stir together Italian Mix neat and neat Egg in a medium sized bowl. Add water and mix well. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add neat mixture and chopped onion. Cook over medium heat 7 minutes, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon to make it crumbly. Remove from heat. Stir in cottage cheese and Parmesan cheese.

Pour 1 cup marinara sauce in the bottom of a 13 X 9 baking pan. Using a spoon, fill each shell with Neat mixture. Place on top of sauce in pan. Pour remaining sauce over filled shells. Top with shredded mozzarella cheese.

Bake 25 minutes in preheated oven.

 

Neat Taco Stuffed Peppers by Kristen Heigl

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Serves 6

6 red bell peppers, tops removed, seeded
1 pack neat Original Mix, prepared according to package directions
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, diced
1 yellow pepper, diced
1 cup mild salsa
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1 can (15 ounces) black beans
1/2 cup can corn
1/4 cup sour cream
1 neat egg, prepared according to package directions
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon taco seasoning
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 cup quinoa, prepared
3/4 cup cheddar cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and place peppers upright into a baking dish.

Brown the neat mixture in large pan, add the olive oil, onion, yellow pepper and cook until the onions are translucent. Add the salsa, tomato paste, black beans, corn and cook for about 3 minutes until mixture is thick and combined. Stir in the sour cream, cheddar cheese, Neat egg, salt, pepper, taco seasoning, quinoa and cumin. Cook for 5 minutes. Stuff the green peppers with the skillet mixture. Bake peppers for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and top with cheddar cheese. Bake for about another 15 minutes or until the peppers are tender.

Thank you to everyone who submitted a neat dish! Be sure to keep on being creative and we’ll look for your next dish next March for the neat-est dish III!

The neat-est dish II winner

The neat-est dish II contest has come to a close, and the winner has been chosen!

The dishes were judged by creativity, quality and presentation. The dish had to be vegan or vegetarian and made with the neat egg and a neat flavor.

Before we announce the winner, we just want to thank everyone who submitted their dish in our neat-est dish II contest. We always enjoy seeing what you’re making with neat!

AND the winner is……..

Jenny Dunklee!

Of all the recipes, we had the most fun making and eating this one! There are a lot of steps, but each one is easy and can be done in advance. Jenny’s recipe was creative and something new! Her Neat Mini Pastry Pies are vegan and could be adapted to be gluten free. They were beautiful coming out of the oven and sooooo yummy, great for a party appetizer!  The Lapp’s will be bringing her Neat Mini Pastry Pies to Easter Dinner this year! Congratulations, Jenny! – The Lapp family.

Her recipe – Neat Mini Pastry Pies (makes 12)

neat pastry pie 3

This recipe has a bunch of steps but each one is super easy and all can be done in advance, so you can spread it out over hours or days and the effort is absolutely worth it!

Pastry Dough

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 8 tablespoons vegan margarine, cold**
  • 3/4 cup ice water
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Method:

  1. In a food processor, combine the flour, salt, baking powder, thyme and rosemary and pulse just to combine.
  2. Cut the vegan margarine into chunks and add it to the flour.  Pulse in the processor until the mixure resembles coarse sand. (you can also do this with a pastry blender or with forks, don’t use your hands because it will warm up the margarine)
  3. Pour the flour mixture into a large bowl.
  4. Add the vinegar to the water and then pour it slowly into the flour, mixing with a fork until a cohesive dough forms.  You may need to add a little bit more ice water, a teaspoon at a time, until the dough holds together.
  5. Knead the dough for two minutes in the bowl and then divide it in half, form it into 2 disks, cover tightly with plastic wrap and chill for a minimum of 1 hour. Dough can be kept refrigerated for up to 3 days.

**I put my margarine in the freezer for about 10 minutes before using

Neat Filling

Ingredients:

  • 1 package Neat original mix
  • 2 Neat eggs
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons water

Method:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and mix until all combined. Set aside until ready to use. Can be kept covered in the refrigerator up to 3 days.

Vegetable Filling

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 stalk celery, finely diced
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and finely diced
  • 1/4 of a large green pepper, finely diced
  • salt & pepper to taste

Method:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a saute pan over medium high heat.
  2. Add the onions and saute for 2 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic, celery, carrot, pepper and salt & pepper and cook for 5 more minutes, until vegetables are softened.
  4. Remove from heat and let cool completely.  Can be kept refrigerated up to 4 days.

Mashed Potato Filling 

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2 tablespoons vegan margarine
  • 1 tablespoon plain unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • salt & pepper to taste

Method:

  1. Bring a pot of water to boil and cook the potatoes until they are tender.
  2. Drain the water off and combine the potatoes with the vegan margarine, non dairy milk and salt and pepper and mash until mostly smooth.
  3. Let cool completely. Can be stored in the refrigerator up to 4 days.

Vegan Gravy

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon vegan margarine
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1/8 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried sage
  • smoked paprika (optional)

Method:

  1. In a small pan, melt the margarine over med-low heat.
  2. Whisk in the flour until you have a smooth paste and cook over low heat, whisking constantly for 3 minutes.
  3. Slowly pour in the vegetable broth, whisking to prevent lumps.
  4. Add the remaining ingredients and cook for 8-10 minutes until gravy thickens and coats the back of a spoon(it will also thicken more when it cools).
  5. Remove from heat and let cool completely. Can be stored refrigerated for up to a week.

Assembly:

  1. Preheat oven to 375F.  Lightly grease or spray a 12 cup muffin tin with cooking oil.
  2. Divide the pastry dough into 12 balls. With a rolling pin, roll each ball out to about 1/4″ thickness, keeping it as evenly round as possible (it works best to do this on a piece of wax paper so the dough won’t stick.  You can also dust the surface with a little flour if necessary).
  3. Line each muffin cup with the rounds of dough, pressing it down into the cup and against the sides.  Fold the edges of the dough under to form a nice crust along the top.
  4. Fill each cup with just under a tablespoon of Neat mixture, then 1 tablespoon of the sauted vegetables, next 1 tablespoon mashed potato, and finishing with 1 tablespoon gravy.  Sprinkle smoked paprika on top if desired.
  5. Bake for 15-20 minutes until pastry is golden brown (the bottoms with cook faster than the top).
  6. Let cool for 5-10 minutes, then serve with remaining gravy on the side.
  7. Can be refrigerated for up to 5 days (and they taste just as good cold too!).

Neat mini pastry pie 2 neat mini pastry pies

Congratulations to Jenny on a delicious neat dish!

We’ll be announcing our top three dishes in the next couple of days. Stay tuned!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

What better way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, than a nice plate of Shepherd’s Pie!

Dig in!

ShepherdsPie_1

1 Package neat Original Mix
1 Tbl olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 carrots, diced
1 cup beef or vegetable stock
1 Tbl tomato paste
3 Tbl Worcestershire Sauce
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
1 cup Frozen peas
½ cup stock
1 Tbl cornstarch

2lbs. Baking Potatoes
4 Tbl butter
3/4 cup heavy cream
½ cup sour cream
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper
½ tsp paprika

Peel and cut potatoes in large chucks.  Place in large pot with water to cover by 1 inch.  Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce and simmer until the potatoes are tender.

ShepherdsPie_2Prepare neat Original according to package.  Brown mixture in large saut© pan, remove and set aside.  Heat olive oil in pan, add onion and diced carrots.  Saute until soft, about 7 minutes. Add 1 cup stock, tomato paste, and Worcestershire sauce.  Add dried thyme, salt and pepper.  Return neat crumbles to pan and stir in peas.  Mix ½ cup stock with the cornstarch until dissolved.  Pour into mixture and bring to a boil.  Simmer until thickened.

Drain the cooked potatoes.  Mash potatoes with mixer or potato masher.  Stir in butter to hot potatoes.  Add heavy cream, sour cream, salt & pepper.  Mix until smooth.  Place neat and vegetable mixture in bottom of a 2 quart baking dish or pie plate.  Top with mash potatoes.  Sprinkle top with paprika.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, until heated through and potatoes are slightly browned.  Serve immediately.

Photos and recipe by Lisa Ventura.