Something I Tried: Neat Italian Mix

So I've seen Neat "meat replacement" in the store a few times and always passed it by. I generally find that the premixed "just add water" type packages are dry and crumbly. But recently I was in the mood for some meatballs so I finally snagged a bag and got to meatballin'. The instructions on the bag call for an egg, but it suggests that the vegan consumers use a vegan substitute...nothing was mentioned specifically so I was left to my own creativity. I mixed up a flax egg (1 Tbsp flaxseed meal, 2 Tbsp warm water) and first pan fried to get a nice brown color and then finishing in the oven so that they were cooked through. While the finished product looked amazing, it was totally dry and it was totally bland (it was seasoned with Italian seasoning, but that was somehow off). The neat-balls were lacking any texture and juiciness I would expect from a vegan meatball. Lovely picture but I won't be buying this again.
Pasta with tomatoes, neatballs and nooch