In place of turkey, some families prefer to serve goose for Christmas dinners and other special occasions. A goose has an individual flavor, which is different from turkey and other fowls. It is actually a favorite in European households where it is served at family dinners even if there is no occasion at all. The way to prepare a goose for cooking does not go far from the procedure with turkey although there are some methods that are good only for goose. Here are tips to guide you in preparing a goose for cooking:
- Purchase goose in frozen form. People who lead laid back lives in small counties will probably instruct you to first catch the goose in the barn. However in this modern age, most people prefer frozen and ready to cook products than to grab an animal for dinner. Although grocery stores have more supplies of frozen turkey, they also sell frozen goose, albeit in limited stocks.
- Thaw the frozen goose. Before slicing and chopping the goose into serving parts, defrost it first until it becomes soft enough for your knife to cut in. The use of a microwave oven is one popular way of thawing frozen goods. You may do it with frozen goose, however, it may take quite a time before it can be thoroughly thawed because of its mass. The best way therefore is to take out the frozen goose the night before cooking and place it in the chiller where it will not freeze further. When you take it out from the fridge the next morning, it will have softened considerably. Give it an hour or two more and it is ready for cutting.
- Decide how to cook the goose. Before cutting the goose, consider first how you will cook it. Do you want it broiled or baked whole? Or do you want to cook it in some sauce or perhaps deep fry it in oil? If you want to bake it whole, all you need to do is cut off the fatty portions such as the skin on the lower part between the legs. Insert your hand in the hole and take out whatever remains there are – liver, gizzard and other internal organs. On the other hand, if you want to cook it another way, cut the goose in serving portions.
- Rub salt. Goose and other fowl sometimes have an unpleasant smell. This is attributed to their environment where they are raised, particularly when they are let loose on a farm. Remove the smell by rubbing salt generously on its skin and inside the whole. Take care however not to rub too vigorously as the skin might fall off. After the salt treatment, wash it thoroughly with tap water and drain.
- Prepare the ingredients. It is best that you purchase and be ready with the ingredients before cooking the goose. If you need to marinate, do it the night before actual cooking so that the mixture will infuse thoroughly with the fowl meat.