Poultry is always a favorite main dish for any celebration. But to those who do not go the way of the turkey (maybe the recent Thanksgiving gave you enough of it), a very good option is to cook goose instead. Goose meat is darker and has a fuller flavor as compared to the lightness of the turkey. Goose is particularly popular in Europe, and its stuffing can include chestnuts, prunes and potatoes. Below is a recipe for Christmas Goose, a fine step away from the usual turkey,
1 10-12 lb goose (fresh or thawed)
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
3-4 turns of fresh ground pepper
1 whole head of garlic, peeled and sectioned
1 large bunch of thyme
1 large bunch of sage.
1.Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F
2.Clean up the excess fat of the goose, especially around the neck cavity. You can save this for rendering later. You also want to remove the gilblets and innards. all of these bits can be cooked separately and added to your feast gravy or stuffing.
3.Rinse the goose and pat it dry. Place it in a cooking rack. Using a fork, prick through the skin down to the fat layer. Sprinkle the salt and pepper over the goose and inside the cavity. The garlice, thyme and sage go inside the cavity too and everything goes into the oven.
4.Roast for 30 minutes then remove the goose from the oven to drain off the excess fat and to baste the goose with 4 oz. of boiling water.
5.Repeat this draining and basting for the next 2 1/2-3 hours, when a thermometer pressed into the thigh reads at 175 degrees F.
6.The goose duck juices should run dark brown.
7.Let the goose rest for thirty minutes before you carve.
8.It’s a little more mork than a turkey or chicken but the taste should make up for the effort.