Did you know that tempeh originated in Indonesia? On the island of Java, in particular. Me neither, until recently. Fermented soy beans formed into a cake and wrapped in a banana leaf, it's got a meaty texture and it's pretty inexpensive and quite tasty. It's got a bit of a nutty flavor that I adore.
In the U.S. tempeh is almost exclusively sold to hippies, but here's it's ubiquitous. I've been eating a lot of it (spelled "tempe" here) around town... fried, curried, coated in sweet soy sauce and chilis... they've got it all. My favorite, though, is this curried tempe/tofu combo (which I think may be called tempe gulai, but I am not sure yet- I just point) that I have been getting for lunch, along with these awesome papaya leaves and spicy green beans (all the above, including Diet Coke for the equivalent of $2.92).
Inspired, I bought some tempeh at the grocery store and used it to make a recipe I had made last year using tofu... orangey ginger glaze, cilantro and coriander, plus my addition of hot sauce and green onions. Mmm.
I highly recommend you try some tempeh, and this recipe. I also warn you that the tempeh smells not unlike feet when it first starts to cook. Don't be intimidated or dissuaded. Soldier on and it will be worth it.