Friday, December 9, 2011

My Goose Was Already Cooked

Many years ago I remember trying to cook a Christmas goose. It wasn’t a total disaster, but I do remember gamey, less-than-tender meat, and copious amounts of grease. So, despite several food wishes for this iconic holiday roast, I decided it wasn’t something I wanted to revisit.

Then, I received an offer to try a pre-cooked, smoked goose from Schiltz Foods. They’re the country’s largest goose producer, and a sponsor of this year’s Tasty Awards. They were offering their geese to select Tasty Award nominees to try out, so I decided to give it a whirl.

I’ll admit to being skeptical since reheating pre-cooked meats usually don’t produce the best results. However, this turned out amazingly well. As you’ll see, the skin roasted up perfectly crisp, and the meat was moist and flavorful. By the way, I did zero food styling in this video, and the magazine-quality final product you see in these photos was exactly what came out of the oven.

Since the bird is brined and smoked, the taste is that of a very rich, moderately salty ham. So, if you want a Christmas goose that actually tastes like goose, this may not be your best choice. But, if you’re considering a holiday ham, and want a real showstopper in the center of the table, I think this is a great choice. Think of it as a delicious ham with wings.

I sacrificed half the wings to make a basic reduction sauce, and the subtle smokiness worked wonderfully with the red wine, balsamic vinegar, and blackberry notes. The sauce is certainly optional, as this could be served plain with just some cranberry sauce on the side. I hope you’re able to give this very easy-to-prepare, gorgeous roast goose a try. Enjoy!

1 whole pre-cooked smoked goose (mine was about 6 pounds)
For the sauce:
2 flat sections of goose’s wings
1/2 cup red wine
3 cups water
1 star anise
1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1/4 cup aged balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup blackberry jam
2-3 tablespoons cold butter, cut in cubes
salt to taste

Disclaimer: As stated above, this post was made possible by Schiltz Foods, Inc., who provided the smoked goose free of charge. I’d like to thank them for bringing goose back into my life. If you want more information, or are interested in ordering a goose for the holidays, please follow this link to their official website.

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