The last Le Creuset video of the year is also my favorite, and one of the great celebratory meals available: goose!

Le Creuset actually makes a goose pot—it’s even called a goose pot—and it is one big mother of a cooking vessel. I absolutely LOVE it. You could give a baby a bath in it. You could plant an herb garden in it during the summer. But here, we’re cooking goose!

Believe it or not, it’s a relatively simple, make-ahead meal, using a dual cooking method. The goose is first braised in wine and water, which renders the abundant fat, cooks and tenderizes the goose, and becomes in itself a rich stock.

Everything can then be chilled for up to three days and finished in an hour. Every december, a group of my oldest pals and spouse get together I’ll be cooking this goose again for our annual fête.

Holiday Goose!

  • one 10-pound goose
  • 4 leeks, root ends removed, cut in half widthwise, then lengthwise, and thoroughly washed
  • 4 Spanish onions, cut in eighths
  • 8 large carrots, peeled and cut as needed
  • 4 bay leaves
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon peppercorns
  • 2 cups dry white wine
  • 1 gallon water
  1. Wash the goose inside and out. Remove anything stuffed in its cavity (reserve the liver if you wish). Return the neck, heart, and gizzard to the cavity. Cut the wing tips off the goose and stuff those in the cavity as well. Prick the goose all over with the tip of a paring knife to facilitate the fat’s cooking out.
  2. Combine all the ingredients in a goose pot, packing the cavity of the goose with as many carrots, onions, and leeks as will fit. The idea is to pack the pot so full you use as little water as possible. Add the wine and enough water to cover the legs of the goose, about three-quarters of the way up the goose.
  3. Put the pot over high heat and bring to a simmer, skimming any foam and gunk (coagulated protein) from the pot. Simmer for 5 minutes, then turn the burner to low and let it cook for 3 hours; the water should remain at about 180°F/82°C.
  4. Remove the goose from the pot, let it drain, and cool in the refrigerator, uncovered, overnight.
  5. Strain the goose stock into a pot, allow it to cool, then refrigerate it overnight too.
  6. The next day remove the fat from the top of the stock. If you have time, simmer the stock to reduce it by about half.
  7. Preheat the oven to 425°F/218°C to 450°F/232°C, convection bake if that’s an option.
  8. Put the goose in the cleaned goose pot, and then into the oven. Roast for 1 hour. If the skin isn’t browned and crispy you can turn on the broiler.
  9. Remove the bird from the pot and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Cover the bottom of a roasting pan (or your cleaned goose pot) with about 1 inch of the stock. Set it over a burner and bring it to a simmer, then turn the heat to low.
  10. Remove each leg from the goose at the thigh joint, then separate the thigh from the drumstick. Carve the meat off the leg pieces and put them in the roasting pan, and bring the heat up so that the stock gently simmers. Cook the leg meat another 10 minutes.
  11. Remove each side of the breast whole from the carcass (save the carcass and leg bones to make more stock; you can freeze them to make the stock weeks later if you wish). Slice the goose breasts widthwise in 1/4-inch slices. Fan it atop the goose leg meat simmering in the stock. Turn the heat to low. Spoon the hot stock over the goose breast.
  12. Serve with mustard or a mustard sauce made by combining ¾ cup Dijon mustard with 1 1/4 cups goose stock.

Serves 8

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© 2013 Michael Ruhlman. Photo © 2013 Donna Turner Ruhlman. All rights reserved.

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23 Wonderful responses to “Le Creuset Holiday Goose”

  • A.S.

    I suppose a shorter version of this recipe would have been: see Turkey recipe. Substitute goose. Refrigerate in the middle.

    OK, not exactly, but that’s the idea, right? :)

    (BTW, the Turkey was a huge hit at my house on Thanksgiving.)

  • NYCook

    And I bet that le cruset goose pot is decently priced? I’m just jealous my kitchen isn’t outfitted by Le Cruset, but I am partial to my Peugot salt and pepper mills. When Lacto fermenting pickles, in my case B&Bs, how will the addition of sugar, if at all, affect the chemical process? Happy Holidays Ruhlman!

  • Mark Bernstein

    I didn’t know that there existed pots that cost $575 on sale. That’s a lot of goose.

    More to the point, that’s a lot of space in your kitchen to tie up. Might one be able to improvise by placing the goose vertically in a stockpot?

  • addiesdad

    Any idea on what size goose would fit in a large Le Creuset dutch oven? I’d love to try this, but can’t afford the Goose Pot (although I’d LOVE to have one!)

  • Dean

    That looks fantastic. I recall my mother roasting a goose in an huge old DRU enameled cast iron pot that was passed down to me. Your method seems to solve the problem of how to cook a goose without it drying out. In my experience the fat often renders so quickly the meat loses moisture. The braise then roast technique looks promising. Do you think it will work for duck also? I have an oval Le Creuset dutch oven that would be just the right size.

  • addiesdad

    @Dean, funny he swapped duck for goose in line 4. His comment above indicates it’d work for any poultry!

  • addiesdad

    @Dean, I think Michael’s comments above indicate this technique is good for any bird, with variances based on bird size. I’m thinking of testing this with a local, pasture-raised chicken just to get the steps down.

    • ruhlman

      yes to all. works esp well for the fatty birds. You could also cut goose up ahead of time, but then you can’t present the roasted wonder.

  • Ryan

    Would I be able to use this same procedure for duck? Or does the fat content differences (if any) change the ability to poach then roast?

  • Carolyn Z

    I could only view the video on Firefox, not Chrome nor Safari. Good video.

  • allen

    I feel like Jeff Lebowski,” hey man, uh…, is this Friday?”
    No cocktail post?

  • allen

    Such a thoughtful eulogy for Mrs Rogers. You are the best. Honesty brings the tear. Very touching

  • Joe Wiercinski

    The duck in my freezer just fits in my oval Le C No. 25 and possibly could swim a little in the round No. 26. I couldn’t be more pleased and can’t wait to give it a go. This technique looks great.

  • marco north

    Michael – I was surprised there is no salt in the braise/bath. I also see no salt is listed in your ingredients for that segment. Can you explain why you use pepper corns at this point but no salt? I would assume that getting some salt deep into the meat at this stage is a good thing? Or what have I got wrong?

  • Ty

    Michael, The following is what I posted on tumblr & now you drop goose ‘pot’ on me that cost $575.00 without shipping! I am already having to hide anything with fat at the homes of my enablers to keep it from my wife. I am reminded of the Seinfeld episode of the best (lobster) omelet I have ever tasted as I feel I am dropping tsp of food ‘roofies’ into my preparations and concoctions while I hear murmers of mmmmmmm that is so good!
    Can you get a lower grade pot that would still be dakine?
    Danm you Ruhlman’s for taking my cooking higher. Happy Holiday’s and I loved the 1st martini drink story. Peace
    Damn you Michael Ruhlman. Thanks to your blog, your ratios and your wife Donna’s wonderful photos! I have become a popover addict!!!

    A plethora of popovers made with schmaltz (=chicken crack cocaine), carmelized onion & garlic, green onions & schrooms, bacon & onion & all with extra sharp chedder cheese!

    The one agape was stuffed with cubed garlic roasted chicken & reheated…hello…awesome!

    The one’s in the bowl were sliced in half for meatloaf sammies.

    Again, Damn you Ruhlmans! Popovers just in time for Yorkshire Pudding for the holidays, are you kidding me?

  • Glenn Bech

    Hi, I guess this technique would work well for Duck as well – as it also is very fatty. Do you have any idea of cooking time for duck?