Tart London: How to make Roast Goose

Tart London: How to make Roast Goose

The countdown to Christmas starts now.

A month of over-indulging, merry parties, far too much bubbly, but also generosity and kindness — we love it. Although weeks away, we are already planning our Christmas Day feast, getting the orders in and thinking about decorations. We have come up with a Tarty take on the festive spread. Each week until Christmas, we will be making a new dish (four in total) to help with your festive entertaining. While we love the traditional Christmas roast, we will be creating fun twists on old classics: dishes you’ll be able to use throughout the year, as well as on the big day.

We have gone for a Middle Eastern vibe for this festive spread, using wonderful fragrant spices, colours and textures. First and foremost is the bird itself. We decided on a roast goose, rich and succulent with crispy skin, with a spiced chestnut and barberry stuffing. You want to snugly fit the clementines, fennel and garlic around the goose, so they flavour the fat that you’ll use to baste the bird with a wonderful Christmas taste.

A goose is quite a fatty bird. If you can, save the fat for cooking roast potatoes. In our opinion, it’s the best fat to use for roasties, and well worth buying from the supermarket or butcher if you’re not actually cooking a goose. Put a good spoonful on a tray and heat in the oven, then tip in pre-boiled potatoes and roast until golden.

Unlike chicken or turkey, a goose can be served slightly pink, but it’s tricky cooking the legs enough without overcooking the breast. You can take the legs off and cook separately but this slightly takes away the wow factor, so we suggest slow-cooking the whole bird. The thick layer of fat should stop it from overcooking.

Tart London: How to make Roast Goose

Jemima Jones (left) and Lucy Carr-Ellison



1 goose, about 4kg

Medium bunch of thyme

3 heads of garlic, cut in half

7 bay leaves

3 sprigs thyme

4 clementines, cut in half

2 fennel bulbs, quartered

250ml white wine

Salt and pepper

For the stuffing

1 tbsp olive oil

1 onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, chopped

1 tbsp grated ginger

1 tsp cumin seeds

500g minced pork

200g chestnuts, chopped

Small bunch of thyme, chopped

Small bunch of parsley, chopped

Small bunch of coriander, chopped

3 tsp ras el hanout

3 tbsp breadcrumbs

3 tsbp barberries

Squeeze of honey

1 egg, beaten


Heat oven to 180C. Stuff the cavity of the goose with the bunch of thyme, 1 head of garlic and 3 of the bay leaves. Place the goose on a rack in a large roasting tray (the rack wants to be raised an inch or so above the tray so the fat can drip into the tin). Loosely wrap the bird in foil and place in the oven. Meanwhile, make the stuffing. Heat the oil in a pan over a medium heat and add the onion, garlic, ginger and cumin seeds and sauté for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and place in a mixing bowl with the rest of the stuffing ingredients. Season with salt and pepper and spread in a baking tin. Place in the oven for 20 minutes until cooked through and golden on top. Remove and cover with tin foil to keep warm until needed.

When the goose has been cooking for an hour, remove from the oven and take the rack out of the tray. Pour out the goose fat (keeping for roast potatoes). Put the goose directly back in the rackless tray and cram around the thyme sprigs, the remaining bay leaves and garlic, clementines, fennel and white wine. Season generously and cover with tin foil. Cook for 30 minutes, then remove the tin foil and cook for another 30 minutes uncovered. Remove from the oven and leave to rest for 20-30 minutes. Serve with the stuffing.

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