Striped Bass with Green Apple Slaw
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- 2 fresh garlic cloves, minced
- 1 to 2 Thai chilies, very finely chopped
- 1 whole head Thai pickled garlic, peeled, sliced (available in Asian specialty shops and online)
- 1/2 cup palm sugar (used interchangeably with “coconut sugar” in Thai cooking, it's sold in tubes or cans and can be found in Asian specialty shops)
- 1/2 cup Thai pickled garlic juice (the juice that comes in the bottle of pickled garlic)
- 1/3 cup fish sauce
- 1/3 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 tablespoon chili paste in soybean oil
- 1 Granny Smith apple, cored, julienned
- 1 cup roasted cashews
- 1/2 red onion, very thinly sliced
- 4 striped bass filets (with skin)
- Salt and freshly ground white pepper
- Canola oil
To prepare the slaw dressing: Heat the oil in a heavy small saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the shallot, fresh garlic, and chilies. Add the pickled garlic and stir until fragrant and very pale golden, about 2 minutes.
Add the palm sugar, garlic juice, fish sauce, lime juice, water, and chili paste. Bring to a boil and stir until the sugar is dissolved and the dressing is well blended. Set the dressing aside until cool, then refrigerate until cold.
To prepare the fish: Using a sharp knife, score the skin on the fish filets. Season both sides of the filets with salt and pepper. Preheat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Lightly coat the grill pan with oil. Grill the fish, skin side down, until the skin is golden brown and crisp, about 2 minutes. Using a metal spatula, turn the fish over and grill until the fish is just cooked through, about 3 minutes longer.
Toss the apples, three-fourths of the cashews, and three-fourths of the red onion in a large bowl with enough of the dressing to coat. Mound the slaw on each of 4 plates.
Scatter the remaining red onions and cashews over the slaw. Top each with a warm grilled fish filet. Spoon more dressing over the fish and serve immediately.