International Recipes and Cooking Around the World

Stekt Gås

Swedish roast goose

(Swedish roast Christmas goose with pan gravy)

Image Creative Commons by Tim Sackton

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Roast goose is a favorite Christmas dish in many countries. This version, with its apple stuffing, comes from Sweden. Unlike other poultry, all goose flesh is dark meat and roasts up like a lean roast beef. Geese, like ducks, are fatty birds,but prepared correctly the meat will be nice and lean and not greasy at all.

The typical goose serves just 4 to 6 people, so for large parties, roast two or more. A bonus with roast goose is its crispy skin — a special treat.

4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

  • Goose (8 to 10 pounds) -- 1
  • Lemon, halved -- 1
  • Salt and pepper -- to season
  • Apples, cut into wedges -- 4 to 6
  • Onions, cut into wedges -- 2
  • Water or chicken stock -- 3 cups
  • Flour -- 1/4 cup
  • Salt and pepper -- to season

Method

  1. Remove the goose from the refrigerator about 45 minutes before you put it in the oven and let it come to room temperature. Wash the goose with cold water, pat it dry with paper towels and tuck the wings under the body to keep them from burning. Prick the goose skin all over with a skewer or toothpick. Peel the skin back from the neck and use a small knife to cut the meat away from the wishbone. Pull the bone out with your fingers and discard it. Trim any excess fat from the opening of the body cavity.
  2. Preheat oven 325°F. Rub the goose with the lemon and season the inside and outside of the bird liberally with salt and pepper. Stuff the chopped apples and onions into the body cavity.
  3. Set the goose, breast side down, on a rack in a roasting pan. If you don't have a V-shaped rack, you may have to tuck balls of scrunched up aluminum foil around the body to keep it upright. Place the roasting pan in the lowest rack of the oven and roast the goose for about 40 minutes, basting with the pan juices every 15 minutes or so.
  4. Meanwhile, add the reserved giblets (minus the liver), neckbone and 3 cups of water or stock to a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer while you finish roasting the goose and preparing the rest of your dinner. Add water or stock as necessary to keep the amount of liquid around 3 cups.
  5. After about 40 minutes, remove the roasting pan from the oven. Carefully turn the goose over so it is breast side up and prick the skin all over again. Baste the goose again and return it to the oven. Roast for another hour or so.
  6. Increase the oven heat to 400°F and roast for another 20 to 30 minutes to finish browning the bird. The temperature in the thickest part of the thigh should measure between 165°F and 175°F (use a meat thermometer). If the breast begins to brown too much, cover it loosely with foil.
  7. Remove the goose from the oven, tent with foil and let it rest for at least 15 minutes while you make the gravy. Strain the simmering stock. Pour any excess fat out of the roasting pan (there will be a lot), leaving about 4 tablespoons in the pan. Place the pan over a medium-low flame on the stovetop and whisk the flour into the fat. Let the flour cook and bubble for a minute or two until it turns a light golden brown. Whisk in the goose stock, scraping the bits of drippings off the pan. Let the gravy simmer and thicken for about about 5 to 7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and strain into gravy boat.
  8. To carve, first remove the wings, then the legs. Cut the legs into drumsticks and thighs. Then cut down each side of breast and carve each breast into thin slices. Serve with the roasted apple wedges. The crispy skin is often served in a separate dish so all the diners can get some.

Stekt Gås Variations

  • Crispy skin is one of the highlights of a well cooked goose. One way to get it really crispy is to blanch the goose before roasting by dipping the whole bird into boiling water for about 30 seconds. Then rinse the goose with cold water, pat it dry and store it in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 days. This tightens up the skin and dries it out. The skin will then squeeze out any excess fat more efficiently and will be crisper in the end.
  • Many sources say roast goose really should be stuffed. Stuff loosely with your favorite stuffing recipe. Or use fruit like lemons, oranges, pears, persimmons or prunes.
  • Don't throw away that goose fat! It's as good as bacon fat for sauteing potatoes and vegetables.

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