Sunday, 23 December 2012

G is for Goose

I'm posting this using a photo from a couple of years ago because I know that in two days time when I finally heave the goose out of the Aga that I will not take a picture.

Our goose is being cooked in the roasting oven of our Aga (approx. 240ºC) for three and a half hours*.

To prep, I cut off some of the excess fat around the neck without cutting into the skin.  I then put an onion (peeled and chopped into quarters), a big handful of sage and half a lemon in the bird.  I don't stuff any bird as (a) it cooks quicker and (b) it's much easier getting the stuffings out of a square casserole dish--if you use good ingredients there's more than enough taste.

I then prick the skin with a carving fork, being careful not to pierce the flesh and then season well.  I then put a butter paper on the top of the goose (to stop the foil sticking) and cover the whole bird with a foil tent before putting it (on a roasting rack, in a roasting tin) into the oven.

About half way through cooking, I take out the tin and transfer the whole bird to a new roasting tin using big lifting forks pictured below, recover with the foil and put it back in the oven.
This is because a goose is incredibly fatty and gives off the most phenomenal quantity of fat.  The fat in the first roasting tray can aside to cool before you decant it into containers to freeze and use for your roast potatoes in the new year, with the usual amount used for the roasties for that day.

25 minutes before your goose's cooking time is up take off the foil tent to allow the skin to colour.

Once cooked, leave the bird to rest on the carving board for 15 minute.  That 15 minutes allows me to pour off the latest rendered fat, and use the meat juices to make the gravy.  I don't have goose stock so I tend to use a mix of chicken and pork stock as the base.

* Mine is a 13 lb goose.  A 10 lb goose would take three hours.  A temperature gauge should reach 74ºC.

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