Hymettus Goose

A very special and succulent main dish, Hymettus Goose gets its name from the honey used to glaze it. Serve the goose with simple accompaniments such as baked potatoes and a mixed salad.

4-6

1 x

8 to

9 lb. goose, oven ready and liver reserved

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

2 fl. oz. clear honey (preferably Hymettus)

1 oz. butter

2 medium-sized onions, finely chopped

2 lb. pork sausage meat

3 oz. fresh white breadcrumbs

2 oz. black olives, stoned and chopped

2 tablespoons red wine

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon dried thyme

½ teaspoon dried oregano

Preheat the oven to very hot 450°F (Gas Mark 8, 230°C).

Prick the goose all over with a fork. Rub the skin of the goose with the salt and pepper and set it aside. Chop the goose liver and set it aside.

To make the stuffing, in a large sauce-pan, melt the butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the onions are soft and translucent but not brown. Add the sausage meat to the pan and stir to break it up. Cook the mixture, stirring frequently, for 5 to 8 minutes, or until the meat loses its pinkness. Add the goose liver and continue cooking and stirring for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the breadcrumbs, olives, wine, salt, pepper, thyme and oregano.

With a wooden spoon, spoon the stuffing into the goose. Close the opening and fasten it with a trussing needle and string or with a skewer.

Place the goose, on its breast, on a rack in a roasting tin. Place the tin in the oven and roast the goose for 15 minutes.

Then reduce the oven temperature to moderate 350°F (Gas Mark 4, 180°C) and continue roasting for 2 to 3 hours, removing the fat from the tin frequently with a basting bulb or spoon. Turn the goose on to its back halfway through the roasting period. To test if the goose is cooked, pierce the thigh with the point of a sharp knife. If the juices that run out are clear, the goose is cooked.

Remove the goose from the oven. Remove all the fat from the roasting tin. Increase the oven temperature to very hot 450°F (Gas Mark 8, 230°C). With a pastry brush, coat the skin of the goose with the honey. Return the goose to the oven and roast for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the skin is crisp and glazed.

Remove the goose from the oven. Remove and discard the trussing string or skewer. Transfer the goose to a heated serving platter. Spoon any honey from the roasting tin over the goose and serve immediately.

Hyssop

An aromatic herb with a bitter, minty flavour, hyssop is often used in salads, or as a flavouring in soups and stews.

Hyssop is also used in the distillation of several liqueurs, such as Chartreuse.

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