Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Goose Soup, or why I will spend 15 minutes to pluck a bird.

The trip last fall to hunt pheasant and geese with the Mavy brothers is a great memory. Three days of beautiful weather (for northern Wyoming) and good opportunities for birds. A first coon hunting experience, and to top it off, having one of my sons with me who enjoyed everything including more than 30(?) hours of driving.

The first morning of hunting began with sneaking on a pond at first light to hunt geese. It went extremely well and leaving the pond an hour later we had eight geese in the truck.

Normally my male kinfolk simply cut the breast meat out and toss the rest of the bird but I asserted at the time that they need to roast a whole goose and try goose soup. I explained a little of how its done but I wanted to share my approach to these menu items. For me its worth plucking the whole bird when you can get two meals for a family the size of mine and both meals are incredible!

For directions on how to roast a wild goose go here:
I don't follow the recipe to the letter in that I don't make stuffing and I don't put pepper in the brine. I put the bird and brine in a 2.5 gallon zip-lock bag and leave it in the fridge for at least a day before cooking. And it doesn't take more than 90 minutes in the oven after you sear the bird to get it to 160º. If the temperature reaches 155º without stuffing than you are probably good to remove the bird, cover with foil for 15 minutes and then cut and serve.
Tonight I cooked the goose to 160º (a little pink) in a roaster pan in the oven. There was room in the oven so I wrapped some potatoes in foil and fit them in on the shelf around the outside of the pan. Some steamed carrots and salad rounded out our meal.

Goose Soup
After your lovely roast goose dinner clean the meat off the bones (including the legs) and cut it up fine. We had 12 ounces of meat left over when we were through eating. Throw the carcass and the skin that everyone didn't eat into a pot of water and cook it until bedtime. All that fat and bones will give excellent wild goose flavor and provide the broth for your soup. The next step can be done immediately or you can wait until you want to prepare the soup to eat; you can refrigerate now or after. The drippings, solids, and bones need to be removed. A gravy separator works great for this step, especially if it has a strainer-type top. I use one similar to the one below. It catches all the stuff you don't want in the soup.
Trudeau 0991105 Gravy/Fat Separator
Everything solid caught in the strainer or that you spoon out can be tossed. The drippings (liquid fat on the top) can be used to make gravy or sauces. The broth is your next dinner! Taste and see if you need to cook it down or add water to dilute. It doesn't need a lot of help with the salt and pepper from the roasting. But add whatever vegetables (celery, carrots, onion?) and seasonings you wish to make it what you want. I think its amazing, plus its good for you!