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Roast Goose with Juniper Berry Sauce

Serves 4 to 6

I do not make it often, but I love goose. I came across a recipe similar to this and decided to give it a try since I love the flavor of juniper berries. I made a few changes to the original for convenience, availability of ingredients and to suit my taste. This is excellent. Make the sauce early in the day or a day ahead, as indicated below. This goose is very good served with a mixture of root vegetables that can be roasted on a separate pan in the same oven as the goose.

Ingredients

   Juniper Berry Sauce
   Goose

For the sauce, season the chicken and goose parts with a little salt and pepper. Heat the olive oil in a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Add the poultry pieces and brown well on all sides. Add the vegetables in whole pieces and brown. Stir in the tomato paste and cook about 2 minutes. Add the wine and bring to a boil. Stir, scraping up all of the browned bits on the bottom. Add the chicken broth and enough water just to cover the meat and vegetables. Add the remaining ingredients except the butter. Bring to a simmer; cover and cook until everything is very tender, about 1-1/2 hours. Strain; discard meats and vegetables and remove as much fat as possible from the broth. (Can be made the day before and refrigerated until needed. This will also make it easier to remove the fat after it congeals.)

For the goose, preheat oven to 350° F. Trim visible fat from the goose. Season inside and out with salt and pepper. Place the thyme, rosemary, bay leaves, garlic and juniper berries inside the cavity. Place on a rack in a large roasting pan. Roast for 2 hours, basting about every 15 minutes with the accumulated fat in the pan for the first hour. (The goose needs about 14 minutes roasting time per pound. Internal temperature should register 170° F. Be very careful when inserting an instant-read thermometer because it is very easy to hit bone on a goose.) Remove the goose to a carving board and tent with foil. Let rest for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring the sauce back to a boil and reduce until desired consistency or until it just coats the back of a spoon. Taste for seasoning. Add the butter and whisk just until melted. Carve the goose, place on individual serving plates and drizzle with sauce. Pass extra sauce separately.