Events and Celebrations

  • 5–6 kg (11–13 lb) oven-ready goose, plus giblets
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 celery stick
  • 1.2 litres (2 pints) water
  • 50 g (2 oz) butter
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 375 g (12 oz) dried figs, chopped
  • 175 g (6 oz) fresh breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 2 tablespoons chopped thyme
  • 1 egg
  • 8 small apples, cored
  • 16 whole cloves
  • 25 g (1 oz) light muscovado sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground mixed spice
  • salt and pepper

Put the giblets in a saucepan, discarding the liver. Add the halved onion, carrot, celery and measured water. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer gently for 1 hour. Strain the giblet stock and reserve.

Melt half the butter and fry the onion for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and add 250 g (8 oz) of the figs and the breadcrumbs, parsley, thyme and egg. Season lightly and mix well. Pack half the stuffing into the neck end. Shape the remaining stuffing into 2.5 cm (1 inch) balls.

Tuck the skin flap under the bird and truss it, with the wings folded under the body and the legs tied together with string. Place on a rack over a roasting tin. Roast the goose in a preheated oven, 180°C (350°F), Gas Mark 4, for 2¾ hours.

Cut a thin slice off the top of each apple and stud with 2 whole cloves. Combine the remaining figs, sugar and mixed spice and pack into and on top of the apples. Melt the remaining butter and pour it over the apples.

Place the apples and stuffing in the oven 30 minutes before the end of the goose roasting time, basting the apples frequently with the butter. Test the goose to see if it is cooked (see page 14). Transfer to a warmed serving dish and add the spiced apples and stuffing balls. Keep warm.

Pour off all the fat from the roasting tin. Add 600 ml (1 pint) reserved giblet stock, making up with water if necessary. Bring to the boil and season lightly with salt and pepper. Strain and serve with the goose.

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