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Roast goose leg and breast on a brown plate with braised cabbage and potato dumplings.
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Roast goose

Juicy roast goose with crispy skin, baked with flavorful apple-onion-chestnut stuffing.
Course Main Course
Cuisine austrian, German
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 30 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Aleksandra

Ingredients

the goose:

  • 1 goose 7.7lbs/3.5kg
  • 1.5 tablespoons fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons marjoram
  • 2 tablespoons thyme

the stuffing:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 stale dinner rolls
  • 2 medium apples
  • 3.5 oz (100g) cooked chestnuts
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk 60ml
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon marjoram
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • salt and pepper to taste

for the gravy:

  • 3/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 medium carrots
  • 2 ribs celery
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • couple twigs fresh herbs like rosemary and thyme
  • 2 teaspoons flour

Instructions

Make the stuffing:

  • Peel the onion, cut it in half, then into slices. Peel and core the apples then cut them into 1-inch (2.5 cm) chunks. Cut the rolls into 1-inch (2.5 cm) cubes. Melt the butter in a medium pot and add the onions. Cook for 4-5 minutes until soft and translucent. Take the pot of the heat, add the apples, rolls, and crushed chestnuts. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs with milk and honey and add to the pot. Season the stuffing with marjoram, nutmeg, salt, pepper, and stir everything together.

Prepare the goose:

  • Remove the giblets and neck from the goose cavity (they are usually stored inside the goose in a plastic bag), reserve the neck for the gravy. Trim the excess fat from the tail. Wash the goose with wet paper towels then pat dry with paper towels - inside and outside. Optionally, chop off the ends of the wings, at the first joint (to prevent burning, this is more necessary for bigger birds), you can also use them for the gravy. Use a tip of a sharp knife to pierce the skin in a couple places around the thighs and the tail, creating tiny exit points for the escaping fat, do not poke or pierce the actual meat.
  • Stir the salt, pepper, marjoram, and thyme together and rub the goose with the mixture. Adjust the amount of salt to the bird's weight, for a 8lbs (3.5kg) goose I used 1.5 Tbsp, for a 10lbs (4.5kg) bird use about 2 Tbsp. Rub it outside, inside, then loosen the skin on the breasts (without completely detaching it or pricking it) and rub the breast meat under the skin with the spices (detaching the goose's skin is a little bit harder than with chicken or turkey, I usually need to cut with a knife or meat scissors a membrane that is between the skin and the breast then loosen the skin with my hands).
  • Preheat the oven to 450°F / 230°C / Gas Mark 8, no fan.
  • Stuff the goose with the stuffing. Use toothpicks to close the cavity at the bottom and around the neck (so that the filling won't fall out).
  • Chop the carrots, onion, and celery ribs into a couple of chunks. Add into a large baking dish along with the wine, garlic, fresh herbs, goose neck, and wing tips. Add about 1.5 cups of water.
  • Place the goose breast-side down on the vegetables or on a wire rack in the baking dish (If you don't have a wire rack that would fit in your baking dish, you can bake the goose on the wire rack that comes with the oven, and place the baking dish on one shelf below, to catch all the fat dripping from the goose). If you don't care about ultra-crispy skin you can place the goose simply at the bottom of the baking dish.

Bake the goose:

  • The principle: Bake the goose 18 minutes / 1 lb + 30 minutes or 40 minutes / 1 kg + 30 minutes (baking time with the stuffing). For a 8 lbs goose this means: (18 minutes x 8 lbs) + 30 minutes = 175 minutes. 30 minutes at high temperature, then lower the temperature and bake it half the time breast side-down and the second-half the time breast-side up.
  • My goose was rather small and weighed with the stuffing 7.7 lbs (3.5 kg), so I baked it first 30 minutes at 450°F / 230°C, then reduced the temperature to 350°F / 180°C / Gas Mark 4 (no fan) and baked it for 1h 10 minutes. Next, I turned the goose over (breast-side up) and baked it for 1 h 10 minutes. After turning the goose breast-side up, sprinkle the breasts and legs again with a little bit of salt, this will help crisp up the skin (do this only if the breast was touching the liquid, meaning some of the salt from the skin went to the liquid). Adjust the baking time to the weight of your goose (for example, for a 10 lbs / 4.5 kg goose: bake it 30 mins at 450F/230C breast-side down, then 90 mins at 350F/180C breast-side down, then 90 mins at 350F/180C breast side-up).
  • Take the goose out of the oven, transfer it to a large plate, and leave to rest for about 15 minutes. While the goose is resting, prepare the gravy.

Make the gravy:

  • Strain all the liquid from the baking dish into a small pot. Most of this liquid is rendered fat. The fat (clear yellow liquid) will be at the top and brown drippings needed for gravy will be at the bottom. Try to collect the fat at the top, first with a ladle (reserve this pure, clear yellow fat for other dishes), then when the yellow fat will start to mix with the brown drippings (I discard this part) tilt the pot slightly and collect the fat with a spoon until you get about 1 cup brown liquid at the bottom of the pot (it will still be rather fatty). Pour the drippings into a small pot, add flour slurry (flour whisked with 2 teaspoons of cold water), bring to a boil, and cook over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes or until thickened (see notes for alternative gravy).

Serve:

  • Carve the goose, serve with the gravy.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

  • If your goose is frozen, thaw it first in the fridge - this will take about 1,5-2.5 days, depending on the goose's weight. Make sure your goose is really defrosted before rubbing it with herbs and baking it or it won't absorb the flavor properly.
  • Stuffing alternative: take 1 large orange, 2 medium apples, and 1 large onion, cut into quarters, and stuff goose with them.
  • Reserve the carcass, any leftover bones, and the wings to make an amazing goose stock. It's a great base for French onion soup or for gravy. Directions are in the body of the post.
  • If you have more time and want to have more gravy, you can make the sauce on the stovetop: Heat 1-2 Tbsp of frying oil in a medium pot. Add the goose neck and wing tips. Cook them over high heat until browned. Add roughly chopped: 1 celery rib, 1 medium onion, 2 carrots, 2 whole garlic cloves, and cook them for a couple of minutes until browned. Add 3/4 cup dry white wine, 2 cups goose/duck/chicken broth, a couple of twigs fresh herbs (like rosemary or thyme), and 1/2 teaspoon of tomato paste. Bring to a boil and simmer for about an hour, then thicken at the end with flour slurry (2 teaspoons flour mixed with 2 teaspoons water), and season with salt and pepper. It would be best to use a good-quality goose or duck's broth. You can make it from the roast goose bones and carcass and use it for the next roast goose and gravy.
  • For an extra crispy skin and a little more juicy meat, you can leave seasoned duck (with salt and spices) in the fridge for up to 2 days (uncover it for one night).