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Goose me for Thanksgiving

Well, it turns out that Thanksgiving this year will be a very low key event, just my lovely wife and myself. I was thinking I'd make a duck, which never fails to satisfy. But I've been looking for a good excuse to try cooking a goose. I realize that a goose is really way too much for just the two of us for dinner. So is a duck, but we LOVE the things I can do with the leftovers, especially making a soup from the carcass.

Anyway, so this will be my first experience with a duck. I'm looking for roasting suggestions as well as leftovers suggestions. I've heard that goose fat is just wonderful for roasting anything, so I'm planning on saving that. Are there "stuff/no stuff" factions with geese like with turkeys?

I'm really intrigued by some recipes I've seen online calling for a port. Any excuse to throw alcohol into my food is always fun. :-)

Thanks in advance.

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  1. Farmed goose meat is kind of boring, but it's worth roasting the bird just for the delicious fat. One goose throws off a lot of fat.

    Note that wild goose is the opposite, tasty but very lean, really needs to be wrapped in caul fat or something.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Robert Lauriston

      I wasn't aware of the farm/wild distinction. I live in Los Angeles; I imagine I can get a wild goose here. Hmmm, I may be carrying my goose joke too far. :-)

      I may call ahead to my local butcher (over at Farmer's Market) and find out if it's something I should pre-order.

      1. re: bdumes

        Farm goose you can find anytime in the freezer of your nearest Chinese supermarket.

    2. Actually, a goose is not that excessive for two people, especially a small goose. Goose has the lowest meat to bone ratio of the major poultry/waterfowl in the market.

      Whatever you do, do not throw away that fat, which is liquid culinary white gold. It will keep for years in the freezer (and at least a couple in the frig) and is invaluable.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Karl S

        That is so true. Boy was I surprised the first time I cooked a goose many years ago. You'd get more meat off of a duck. I think it, at the time with younger larger appetites, I figured it would have fed 3 people tops.

      2. I raised - and ate - both goose and duck for many years. Goose has a most distinctive flavor - but , is not to my taste at all. A duck , on the other hand, is 1 of my favorite meats.

        Personally - I would bone the whole bird , leaving the skin attached to the meat and leaving it all in 1 large piece. Then I would stuff it and roll it. Tie it. Roast it. (I am sure u can find directions for this someplace - U need a boning knife , but it isn't at all hard - it takes about 20 minutes to bone.

        U can do it with either bird - but u will have leftovers with the goose and not so much with the duck. The broth can still be made but I sure don't care too much for goose broth.

        If u do a goose - u can cut off the fat , save it , if u desire -same with the duck, of course.

        GL and as romantic and early American and authentic as the goose might sound - my family all preferred the duck.

        1 Reply
        1. re: dibob817

          Goose is usually compared to beef in flavor, and I think that is a reasonable approximation. I love both goose and duck, though duck tends to be more tender, and goose more intensely flavored. Goose fat is a bit more lux than duck fat.

        2. 1) Make sure the goose will fit in your oven. They are longer than turks.
          2) Prick the skin a bunch so the fat can be more easily released.
          3) Water over the skin at the last and crank up the heat for a crispier skin. You can also preblanch it like you might do for a duck.
          4) Cook it on a rack inside the roasting pan.
          5) Stitch the cavity shut after stuffing so the skin won't shrink back.

          I would consider making a port gravy.

          Your wife is gonna be thrilled.

          1. I love goose. There IS a ton of tasty fat. A technique that has worked very well for me, from an article in the NY times about 8 years ago or so, is as follows: The day before you are cooking the goose, prick the skin all over with a sharp little skewer (just go into the fat, try to avoid the meat). Boil a big pot of water and lower the holey goose into it for about a minute (I do this twice, once on each side). You'll see fat streaming out the holes but you will have removed huge chunks of it and there will be plenty left.

            Put on a rack in a roasting pan, and let sit uncovered overnight in the fridge. Roast as usual.

            Enjoy!