Indonesia: land of tempeh! I absolutely adore tempeh. It's got a nutty, mushroomy flavor and a very impressive nutritional profile. For those who haven't met tempeh yet, tempeh is made from cooking and fermenting whole soybeans until they form solid cakes that can be cut into slices and steamed or fried. It's got more bioavailable protein than tofu or plain cooked soybeans, and the fermentation of tempeh makes it easier to digest. Thank you, Indonesia!
Today I fried my tempeh and then coated it with a glaze made from brown sugar, soy sauce, shallot, and red chile. Sweet and spicy! Next to the tempeh is Indonesian Yellow Rice: rice cooked with turmeric, lemongrass, and coconut milk. This dish is prepared in Indonesia for festivals and sacred occasions. It is often shaped into a cone to represent the sacred mountain Meru. I garnished my cone attempt with a fresh chile cut into a flower blossom.
Beneath the rice is a simple Indonesian vegetable pickle -- carrot, cucumber, and shallots pickled with vinegar, sugar, and salt; very easy, sweet and crispy. And for dessert, two little clementines. Citrus was appropriate, as there are more varieties of citrus fruits in Indonesia than I have ever heard of in my life.
Verdict: The pickles were my favorite part, crunchy and addictive. The tempeh and rice were good together, but I really can't wait to eat all the leftover tempeh on top of a big green salad; that's my favorite way to eat tempeh. 4 stars.