This is a post especially for the hunters, or those who end up with the booty from their hunting buddies but have no suitable recipe. You are not going to find Canada goose in your local supermarket, but I know there are lots of people who acquire it, and once you have it, it is worth doing something really special with it. I have cooked Canada goose before, and know that it is very dark and lean, strong enough that it can stand a good amount of slow cooking and a generous amount of seasoning.
I was given two birds, all cleaned and cut into nice neat pieces, so I had only two sets of legs and breasts to contend with. I wanted a dish that was easy to serve, wouldn’t have to be consumed all at one meal, and did not require any last minute fussing. If you have one bird, you can make half the recipe. In that case you could cook it in a loaf tin instead of a pie dish, but either way is good.
I used two slow cookers. I’m not sure what temperature they cook at, but I had it at the low setting and the juice was bubbling gently. If you use a Dutch oven pot in your oven, I would begin with a setting of 200 degrees and check that the meat is hot enough to be cooking thoroughly.
Don’t be alarmed by the addition of anchovies. When cooked with meats, the anchovies just dissolve and add a lot flavour – not fishy though. There is no salt in this recipe, but if you choose not to use the anchovies, you will need to add salt. If you don’t have angostura bitters, you could use Worcestershire sauce in its place.
Canada Goose Pie
3 rashers of bacon
legs and breasts from 2 Canada geese
1 large carrot cut into thick slices
1 large onion or equivalent, cut into bit sized pieces
1 cup red wine
1 cup water
1 Tbsp fresh rubbed sage
1 tin anchovies
2 tsp angostura bitters
1 tsp ground pepper
3 Tbsp flour (I used Jerusalem artichoke, but any sauce thickening agent can be used)
pastry for a deep 9″ pie (or equivalent)
1 beaten egg for brushing on the surface
Fry the bacon until it is cooked and has rendered most of the fat. Remove and set aside.
Fry the goose pieces in the bacon fat until browned on all sides.
Put the goose, vegetables and chopped bacon pieces into a slow cooker (I had to use two cookers for this amount).
Deglaze the pan in which the goose was cooked with the wine. Add the water, sage, anchovies, angostura bitters and pepper and pour this mixture over the goose. Cook for about 7-10 hours at a low setting, making sure there is always some liquid in the pot. When done, drain the liquid into a bowl, remove the meat, break it up with two forks as you would with pulled meat and discard the bones. Thicken the liquid with the flour, but no need to heat it as it will cook in the pie.
Fill the pie crust with the works, brush the surface with 1 egg and make cuts in the pastry to allow steam to escape.
Bake at 425 F for ten minutes, lower the heat to 350 F and cook for another 50 minutes.
Serve it hot with mashed potatoes, and serve leftovers at room temperature or reheated. When cooled, the pie resembles a terrine and is excellent with pickles and salad.
Happy Fiesta Friday!