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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley


These soybeans, grown on the west coast of Lombok, are used to produce tofu and tempeh there.
Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley

Boiled beans are tightly wrapped in cotton cloth, and readied for the press.

Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
3 OF 16
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley

An old man stirs soymilk on one side, and boiling soybeans on another.

Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
4 OF 16
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley

Pressing the beans to produce fresh soy milk.

Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
5 OF 16
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley

"We all love tofu, though it is not from Indonesia," said the boss' son Abaya, as he poured the chunky mixture of curdled soymilk, salt and water into a mold lined with an old batik sarong. "We learned this technique from the Chinese traders that came here."

Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
6 OF 16
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley


The husks from rice are all that fuel the fire here. Lombok is dry and trees are few, but the island also grows some of the best quality rice in Indonesia.
Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
7 OF 16
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley

Abaya unwraps a sheet of tofu that's ready for the bamboo drying rack.

Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
8 OF 16
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley


This sheet of firm tofu will air-dry for several hours before being sliced into smaller portions, boiled twice more, and sold.
Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
9 OF 16
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley

Awali, the elder tofu maker, poses for a photo. "We make about 25 kilograms a day here [55 pounds]," he said of the three-man operation he now oversees.

Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
10 OF 16
wrisley tofuslideshow 10.jpg

Photo by Jarrett Wrisley

A woman prepares boiled soybeans in the production of tempeh.

Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
11 OF 16
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley

This machine splits the firm soybeans. Before that, villagers used their feet in a method that is now forbidden by the government.

Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
12 OF 16
wrisley tofuslideshow 12.jpg

Photo by Jarrett Wrisley


A loose slurry of split soybeans is simmered for here several hours to make tempeh.
Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
13 OF 16
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley

Adi, an adolescent boy, shows off the final product that will later be sold at the market. "I make tempeh everyday, but I still love to eat it," he explained. "It's part of Indonesian culture--it's our meat."

Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
14 OF 16
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley

Here, three generations of Adi's family pose for a photo.

Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
15 OF 16
wrisley tofuslideshow 15.jpg

Photo by Jarrett Wrisley


The local bazaar in the town of Phraya where these families sell much of their tofu and tempeh.
Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .
16 OF 16
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Photo by Jarrett Wrisley

A lunch of fried tempeh and tofu, cooked with chilies, garlic and tomatoes, at a beachside restaurant in Kuta.

Jarrett Wrisley realizes soybeans aren't so bad after all in
Learning to Love Tempeh .