In most parts of the Malaysian peninsula, Singapore included, this dish would be called "Indian rojak." As served by Tamil street-food vendors, typically it includes a mixture ("rojak," in Malay) of vegetables, tofu, and various fried things as innocuous as fried dough and as adventurous as lung and spleen. A crucial component is a warm, tangy sweet-potato-based gravy.
The name "pasembur" ($8), however, provides a very broad hint that the proprietor's first home was in the north of the country — Penang, to be precise. Even in Malaysia's capital, Kuala Lumpur, which has no shortage of good chow, Penang is considered a culinary touchstone. This street-cart pasembur contains no meat, let alone offal, but the gravy maintains a good balance between sweet and spicy, and the bowl is ample.
Also shown: a boneless short-rib beef rendang ($13), moderately sweet and sufficiently tender but not complex. Hence the fixings: sambal-tinged onions and hardboiled egg; the tart salad called achat, heavy on the pineapple; and jasmine rice scented with coconut and pandan. A ramshackle papadum canopy has been removed to give a better look at the other ingredients, but the second photo doesn't capture the size of the order. The rendang is as broad and deep as the pasembur, but heftier.
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