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Executive Chef Douglas Balish shares another recipe from one of the Fernery classics. We hope you enjoy making this beautiful dish at home. Serves up to 8 people.


120g potato

40g ‘00’ flour

20g parmesan

10g beaten egg

2g salt

Fennel salad

10g orange juice

45g fennel slice thinly

2 x basil leaves slice thinly

1 sprig of tarragon picked and sliced thinly

1 orange zested

10g lime juice

Pinch of salt


1 x large onion

1 x large fennel head

6 tomatoes deseeded

6 star anise

30g pernod

2 litres fish stock

6 fish heads – cleaned

1.5kg white fish bones

20g tomato puree

12g garlic

1 bay leaf

5g thyme

1g saffron

30g lemon juice

Sea bass

Sea bass fillets to order



Boil the potatoes until they are fully cooked and soft. Peel the potatoes and mash them in a large mixing bowl until smooth.

In the bowl with the mashed potatoes, add the egg and mix well.  Stir in the grated Parmesan cheese and salt, making sure the ingredients are evenly distributed.

Gradually add the flour to the mixture, stirring gently until the dough starts to come together. Use your hands if needed, but avoid overworking the dough.

On a floured surface, roll the dough and cut out bite size pieces to form your gnocchi.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add a splash of olive oil to prevent the gnocchi from sticking together.

Carefully drop the gnocchi into the boiling water. Once it rises to the surface (this should take about 2-3 minutes), they are cooked.  Remove and place in ice water.

Fennel salad

Combine all of the ingredients together to make the salad


Roast the fish bones and heads in the oven at 200C with the fennel, tomatoes, garlic and thyme until golden.

Add all ingredients to a pan and simmer for one hour.

Blend everything until as smooth as possible, including bones and head.

Pass through a fine sieve or a cheese cloth.

Reduce until the flavour is full and the sauce has some body to it.

Add salt and lemon juice to taste.

To serve

Roast the seabass on the skin until crispy. Then turn and leave in the pan for one minute off the heat.

Caramelize the gnocchi in a pan with some oil until golden.

Place fennel salad on the base of your bowl with gnocchi on top. Place the seabass on top and pour over your bouillaisse sauce.

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