Here’s something I bet you didn’t know. That story written by Charles Dickens was called “Tiny Tim.” That’s not the surprising thing. Despite all of the movies, plays and other dramatizations of the classic tale, it was only a little over 2-thousand words. The article you’re now reading is 688 words.
The reason we bring this up is because of this small part of the short story:
“There never was such a goose. Bob said he didn’t believe there ever was such a goose cooked. Its tenderness and flavor, size, and cheapness were the themes of universal admiration. Eked out by apple-sauce and mashed potatoes, it was a sufficient dinner for the whole family; indeed, as Mrs. Cratchit said with great delight (surveying one small atom of a bone upon the dish), they hadn’t ate it all at that! Yet everyone had had enough, and the youngest Cratchits, in particular, were steeped in sage and onions to the eyebrows! But now, the plates being changed by Miss Belinda, Mrs. Cratchit left the room alone–too nervous to bear witnesses–to take up the pudding and bring it in.”
Classic. Just plain classic.
Cooking Your Own Goose
Since you’ve just bagged a beauty, you’re going to need to get all Mrs. Crachit up in the fowl. This ain’t your usual bird. Unlike chicken or turkey, this fine beast is thick-skinned. That means you’re going to render a barrel of fat from roasting.
Preparing the holiday or everyday goose beckons you to take the wishbone from it straight-away. With its breast-side facing up, pull back the skin so you can see the bone. Don’t rip-off the epidermis. You simply want to slice around the wisher so that you can see on both sides of the bone. No need to do a full-blast surgical procedure. You merely want to cut enough so you can yank-out the wishbone.
While there’s a debate about whether stuffing a bird is healthy or not, we’ve got a fix for that. We’ll tell you about it later during our bombshell ending.
Anywho, with your favorite stuffing – or as they say in some parts of America: Dressing – load the large cavity with your prized recipe. Don’t have one? A combo of onions, apples, orange slices and a crushed clove of garlic work wonderfully. When scooping the stuff inside, go Goldilocks-style. Not too little. Not too much. Just enough.
Sew the opening shut with kitchen string and using the trussing needle; lightly poke some shallow holes in the skin. Don’t stab the goose like you’re the Bates kid from “Psycho.” You do not want to puncture the skin.
Cooking Technique You Can Use on All Fowl
Get out the shallow roasting pan and one of those V-shaped adjustable oven racks. Lower the goose onto the rack, placing it on its side. Pour some water in the bottom of the pan to keep the grease from becoming an oven lamp with the burnt oil. You could use chicken or veggie stock in lieu of plain ol’ H2O.
After the upcoming feast has cooked 1/3rd of the way, rotate it so the bottom side now faces upward. For the last third, arrange it so the breast is topside and raise the temp of the oven an additional 20 degrees to toast the breast a touch.
Why move the thing around so much? So that the internal juices get to roll around inside the bird. Trust us; it makes any fowl more juicy and tender.
Do you need to baste the goose? Sure, why not. Just do it with every turn of the fowl. Too much basting however can dry it out.
Now, the Stuffing Cheat
For those who use their time-honored dressing concoction, during the final part of the bird rotation, scoop the stuffing into a lightly oiled pan. Settle it flat and schlep it back in the oven with the goose. This will allow it to cook and save you from hurling the beast an hour-or-two after consumption.
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