Gill Meller

River Cottage on Fire

  • 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 outdoor cooking expert Gill Meller teaches you how to cook over fire - from fire starting (and fire safety), to cooking with a wood oven, cooking in an earth oven (or hangi), and cooking in embers of your fire.

More and more people are enthused by the idea of cooking outside over fire. Not only can you create the most incredible food, it also helps us reconnect with nature and the world around us. It’s a very mindful and rewarding experience and something we should all try to do a little more often.

During this course you will learn everything you need to know about outdoor cooking. You will be taken right back to basics, how to get your fire going, manage fuel and heat.

You'll learn new River Cottage outdoor cooking recipes including pizza, slow roast meat, fish, vegetables and bread – you’ll even be equipped with the skills to cook a leg of venison in your own earth oven.

You'll learn:

  • how to build, control and cook over fire
  • recipes for outdoor cooking including pizza, roasted vegetables, roast lamb, flatbreads & more
  • creating an earth oven or hangi
  • using hot BBQ embers to cook with

The course includes:

  • 4 on-demand video lessons - presented by Gill Meller 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 outdoor cooking 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 outdoor 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 outdoor cooking 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 cooking over fire, so you'll need to think about the location of your fire (or wood oven or earth oven) and ther materials you'll need to make and control your fire.

Ready to get started?

Just add the course to your basket above - choose the 'Expert' option for personal feedback from Gill on your outdoor cooking 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

  • The back to basics campfire/barbecue - an ancient way to cook

    Find out why cooking outside can be so good for your health and wellbeing. You will learn how to get a fire going, the importance of fuel and heat management and the endless possibilities of cooking with open fire. This lesson will show you the possibilities of cooking in the simplest sense and give you the confidence and know how to give it a go even if your new to this stripped back, homespun approach to wild cooking. We will round off the lesson with a simple yet delicious roasted tomato dish.

  • The wood oven - From pizza to slow roast meat to fish to vegetables to bread

    Explore the versatility of a homemade cob oven (or an off the shelf alternative). Learn how to get the fire going, manage and utilise every last bit of heat it has to offer. During this lesson you will create hand-stretched wood-baked pizzas and flatbreads. You will learn how to roast fish, and will finish off with a slow roasted lamb shoulder with lentil dal and spices.

  • The hangi or earth oven - the extraordinary flavour dimensions of underground cooking

    Cooking in the earth is a technique that has been practiced in different ways and by different cultures for many thousands of years but is still as effective now as it was then.

    This lesson will show you how to make your own earth oven at home. From digging the pit, to heating the stones to digging up your supper. You will be amazed by the flavours offered by this form of cooking, and by the end of the lesson you will be able to cook a leg of venison or lamb.

  • Ember based cooking - Overcoming your natural instincts

    Ember based cooking is another ancient technique – it involves cooking food directly in the hot embers of the fire. You’ll have no need for grills after this lesson. Once you’ve grasped the principles it’s amazing what can be done. In this lesson you will make a selection of recipes including baked root vegetable salad with herbs and labneh, onions baked in their skins and served with blue cheese, honey, thyme and walnuts, blackened leeks with mussels and lemon mayonnaise and a dirty steak - cooked directly in the embers of a hot barbecue.

Its given me a huge boost, and a lot more knowledge - I'm so glad I took part.


Choose how you want to learn

  • The Expert option


    Develop your learning further with marked assignments and personal tuition from Gill Meller

    • Start course whenever you like
    • 4 weeks tutor access for personalised assignment feedback & coaching
    • 4 assignments marked by Gill Meller
    • 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 Gill Meller

Gill Meller - Food & Drink
Gill Meller has been involved with River Cottage from the early days and appears regularly on the celebrated Channel 4 series and still works closely with Hugh.

A big advocate for simple, seasonal cookery, Gill makes the most of ingredients and the natural qualities they possess. Gill considers his cooking to be a reflection of his surroundings, taking inspiration from the landscape, his locality, and the amazing farmers, growers, and fishermen that produce the ingredients he uses.

Gill teaches at River Cottage and internationally. He is a regular contributor to titles such as the Observer, Guardian, Waitrose Food, Telegraph and Country Living to name but a few, and his regular recipe column can be found in the award winning Delicious magazine every month. Gill's first book, Gather (2016), won the Fortnum & Mason Award for Best Debut Food Book, and Time (2018) was nominated for the Guild of Food Writers Cookbook of the Year. His latest book Root, Stem, Leaf, Flower was released earlier this year.

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Awards & Accreditations

  • Royal Horticultural Society - Approved Centre 2023-2024
  • Royal Horticultural Society
  • CPD Accredited (provider 50276)
  • 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