My favorite part of any bird is the dark meat - besides the skin, dark meat is the only real "flavor country" found in fowl.
My favorite part of any bird is the dark meat - besides the skin, dark meat is the only real "flavor country" found in fowl. I'm particularly fond of duck because both the leg and breast meat is darker than you'll find in a chicken or a turkey. But ducks are relatively small and, shall we say, flat-chested. A goose, however, is a much more curvaceous creature and offers quite a lot to love. Like ducks, geese fly quite a lot. And just like in any other animal (that I'm aware of), the more a muscle needs to work, the darker its meat will be. So, geese end up being an animal composed entirely of dark meat!
But, if the idea of roasting a goose gives you anxious visions of forgotten kitchen timers and smoking ovens, let me assure you that there's a better way.
Just like a turkey or a duck or a chicken, a goose is a great candidate for sous vide cooking. I started with a whole goose, which I carved into four pieces: two breasts and two legs. I packed each piece in a vacuum bag with salt, aromatics and fat, then cooked sous vide. Just before serving, I shallow-fried each of the pieces to brown and crisp the skin. In reality, I treated the goose just like I was cooking duck confit, sous vide style. This was phenomenally easy, risk-free and wonderfully delicious.
As you'll notice in the picture above, geese have a hefty layer of fat underneath their skin. This helps them stay buoyant and warm, and I personally enjoy eating the fatty exterior, which is made soft and delectable by the long cooking time. However, if you want to reduce the fat layer and you have a little extra time on your hands, before step 4, remove the skin from each piece of goose. Using the back of your knife, scrape the fat away from the underside of the skin. Dust the skin with Activa RM (transglutaminase; meat glue) and place it back on the meat before vacuum sealing. It's a little trick I learned from Modernist Cuisine, which has quite a lot to say about cooking tough and tender meat sous vide.