Gelf Alderson

Next Level Fish & Shellfish Skills

  • Recommended


    Includes personal feedback and tuition. More

  • $75

    Learn in an online classroom with no more than 20 classmates. More

Course Description

River Cottage's Executive chef Gelf Alderson teaches you how to cook seafood. Next Level Fish and Shellfish dives into deeper waters where you’ll learn to tackle more difficult seafood recipes such as Crab Bisque and Oysters Rockefeller.

Gelf will tell you more about using sustainable fish and guiding you through sourcing and preparing a broad selection of seafood such as cephalopods (squid and octopus), oysters, raw fish and more. You'll learn some favourite River Cottage recipes including Squid with Pumpkin Seed Satay and plenty of classics, including ceviche, carpaccio (made with bream) and a scallop tartar.

By the end of this course, you’ll have the confidence to cook crab and understand why making it fresh yourself tastes so much better. You’ll also learn how to pick crab meat like an expert and turn the shells into a rich stock which you’ll use as the base for an indulgent crab bisque.

You'll learn how to source, shuck and serve up oysters - including recipes for cooked and baked oysters.

This course really pushes the boat out, giving you a level of skill on par with professional chefs and it will certainly boost your confidence and entice you to be more adventurous with your fish and shellfish cooking and eating.

You'll learn:

  • how to prepare raw fish and shellfish including ceviche
  • how to cook a live crab
  • sourcing and preparing cephalopods including octopus and squid
  • oyster recipes - raw and cooked options

The course includes:

  • 4 on-demand video lessons - presented by Gelf Alderson and River Cottage
  • lifetime access to the videos, notes and interactive class
  • flexible classes - join and learn when and where you like
  • downloadable lesson notes
  • practical seafood assignments and recipes (with tutor feedback available)
  • access on your mobile, PC, Mac or laptop
  • small interactive online classroom - chat online to students from around the world and share your creative ideas

Independent Cookery Schools Association approved

This course has been approved by the Independent Cookery Schools Association (ICSA), recognising the highest standards of training.

Time to complete the seafood cooking course:

Every student is different but in general we think the whole course will take around 14 hours 20 minutes to complete including:

  • Video lessons: 2 hours 20 minutes in total
  • Course notes: 30 minutes per lesson
  • Your fish and seafood recipe assignments: at least 2 hours per lesson
  • Interactive classroom time: 15 minutes per lesson
  • Tutor feedback review (Expert level): 15 minutes per lesson

You'll need:

Your lesson notes will include the full details of the ingredients you'll need, but you will be making fish and shellfish dishes, so you'll need standard kitchen equipment.

Ready to get started?

Just add the course to your basket above - choose the 'Expert' option for personal feedback from Gelf on your seafood cookery assignments.

If you know someone who'd love this course then give it as a gift - just tick "This is a gift" at the checkout.

Any questions? Contact us by clicking on the orange speech symbol - we'd love to hear from you.

CPD Accreditation

Course activity has been accredited by the CPD Standards Office (CPDSO). The course equates to 14 hours, 20 minutes of CPD learning.
The CPD Standards Office. CPD Provider: 50276.

Course outline

  • Raw fish and shellfish

    In this lesson, Gelf explores various ways to prepare raw fish and shellfish to eat raw.

    You’ll learn how to make a classic Latin American ceviche with of raw bream, citrus and chilli. He’ll also teach you how to make a stunning Carpaccio and an impressive Scallop Tartar.

  • Crab – how to cook, pick and make the most of every part

    Gelf will take you step-by-step through cooking a live crab followed by a detailed lesson on how to pick the meat.

    You’ll then learn how to transform the shells into a decadent bisque, garnished with the freshly picked crab.

  • Cephalopods – how to prepare and enjoy cuttle fish, octopus and squid

    Cephalopods is a family of fish including cuttle fish, octopus, and squid.

    In this lesson, I will guide you through sourcing and preparing cephalopods and then arm you with some impressive recipes including Squid with Pumpkin Seed Satay Sauce and a Mediterranean-inspired Slow-Braised Squid Stew.

  • Oysters – how to open, prepare and cook

    Oysters are a River Cottage favourite – especially given the farm’s location to the sea but they’re also delicious, nutritious and sustainable in the right season.

    Gelf will teach you how to source and prepare both raw and cooked oysters.

    You’ll also learn how to make Oysters with Kimchi and Pears, Oysters Rockefeller, Tempura Oysters and an impressive Oyster Mayonnaise.

Choose how you want to learn

  • The Expert option


    Develop your learning further with marked assignments and personal tuition from Gelf Alderson

    • Start course whenever you like
    • 4 weeks tutor access for personalised assignment feedback & coaching
    • 4 assignments marked by Gelf Alderson
    • Certificate of completion and CPD hours
    • Online classroom with up to 20 classmates
    • 4 lessons with expert videos & notes
    • Group chat & direct message with tutor & classmates
    • Lifetime access to videos, notes & classroom
    Learn more
  • The Peer option

    Discover the benefits of group learning in an online interactive classroom of no more than 20 people. Get the most from shared knowledge and community study

    • Start course whenever you like
    • Practise what you learn with your peers
    • Online classroom with up to 20 classmates
    • 4 lessons with expert videos & notes
    • 4 course assignments
    • Group chat & direct message classmates
    • Lifetime access to videos, notes & classroom
    Learn more

Buy this course for a business or group

You can now buy this course through your business or organisation for individuals and groups up to 20

Food & Drink classroom - how it works

  • Start anytime

    Watch video tutorials led by expert tutors

    Watch video tutorials led by expert tutors
  • Test yourself

    Practice what you learn with inspiring assignments

    Practice what you learn with inspiring assignments
  • Personal tuition

    Get assignment feedback from expert tutors

    Get assignment feedback from expert tutors
  • Share ideas

    Collaborate and chat directly to classmates

    Collaborate and chat directly to classmates

Meet Gelf Alderson

Gelf Alderson - Food & Drink
Gelf Alderson is the Culinary Director at River Cottage having worked alongside Hugh F-W for nearly ten years. Gelf is a dedicated ambassador of the River Cottage commitment to sustainability. He was one of the early pioneers of the farm to fork philosophy and is passionate about using food that is farmed locally, sourced from the River Cottage kitchen garden, or foraged from the surrounding area.

Gelf is able to communicate the importance of sustainable eating in a simple, practical and down to earth way. He is both engaging and charismatic and leaves people with a clear understanding and heads full of ideas to implement at home.

Frequently bought as part of this collection

  • The River Cottage Cooking Diploma: Next Level

    Master the entire subject and SAVE 26% when you buy this collection

    12 Courses • 9 Expert Tutors

    River Cottage Next Level Diploma takes your cooking skills onto the next stage with River Cottage's team of chefs led by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.

    Learn more

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Awards & Accreditations

  • CPD Accredited (provider 50276)
  • Good Web Guide
  • Red Herring Winner
  • Education Investor Awards 2021 - Finalist
  • Royal Horticultural Society
  • Digital Education Awards 2023 Winner for Digital Health and Wellbeing Learning Product of the Year
  • Digital Education Awards 2023 Winner for Adult Home Learning Product of the Year