Sunday, October 14, 2007

"Neatloaf" Recipe

Finally, a recipe!!

This one is a family favorite. In fact, it's so loved that if anyone in this house glances at the weekly menu board, and this is not on it, I hear about it.

As a kid, in order for me to take part in this delicious, typically ground beef concoction, I'd always have to look elsewhere. As my mom, while one of the greatest cooks there ever was, was completely unable to make a viable, not to mention edible, loaf of her own. Something about egg and mushy meat, and childhood nightmares. Her phobia for this dear concoction aside, I grew to love this fond money-saving meal that most of my friends would gripe about.

Now that I've become vegan, I've longed for the hearty warm taste this meal always left me with. When I discovered vegan crumbles, I began concocting recipe after recipe and I feel as though I have FINALLY gotten what I am after.

So without further adieu:

**NOTE: Please keep in mind that when I cook, I cook to feed an army. Make adjustments accordingly. Oh, and that these amounts are just guesses, as I am terrible at actually measuring stuff when I'm in charge.**


3 Boxes of Boca Crumbles (or three bags of Greenwise Crumbles, my personal choice if you live near a Publix)

3/4 tub of firm tofu (not frozen)

1 Cup of fresh bread crumbs

1/4 cup oil

1/4 Cup of soy milk

1/2 Cup of Ketchup

2 Tbsp. A1 Sauce (Smoky Mesquite flavor)

1-3 Tbsp. minced garlic

1-2 Tsp. onion powder

Oregano to taste.

Salt and Pepper to taste.

**In an ideal world all of these items will be thawed and at room temperature. However, if you forget, or don't have time, frozen ingredients work just as well. Just use a hand mixer instead of your hands to incorporate, or my favorite, a stand mixer (just be careful, spillage is expected.)


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Empty all three boxes of crumbles into a bowl.

3. Add tofu and mix.

4. After tofu is encorporated, add the rest of the ingredients, one at a time, until mixture begins to "clean" the sides of the bowl (you may need to add more soy milk or oil to achieve this) You will end up with one big clump, of not so pleasantly colored glop.

5. Transfer mixture to a loaf pan, mini loaf pans (my choice as it tends to hold the mixture together a lot better.) or baking dish and bake in oven for 45 minutes.

6. At 45 minutes, take out and baste with either A1 sauce, ketchup (my choice), or BBQ sauce.

7. Let bake for another 15 minutes for baste to caramelize.

8. Serve and enjoy!

Chef's notes:
~I make this recipe two different ways. The more traditional way, with ketchup smeared on top, with mashed potatoes, and some kind of green veggie. Also, the hearty way. Which is the loaf, on a bed of sauteed mushrooms, no baste on top, but instead slathered with gravy and served with mashed potatoes and asparagus or green beans.

~ If you decide to go the traditional loaf way with this recipe, I think it would be better to make the mixture the night before, cover it, let it freeze overnight then bake it on a lower temperature for a longer amount of time. I think it would hold together better this way. Although I have no proof, as I've never been able to test my theory in this house.

~This is great cold on bread with veganaise the next day.

~Perfect for kids lunches too.

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