Wallsé chef Kurt Gutenbrunner grew up in Austria, where roast goose at Christmas is traditional. He started serving it at his restaurant on Christmas Day last year, and “it was a huge success,” he says. “I’ll be doing it again this year.” For toothsome skin and succulent dark meat, dry the bird in the fridge overnight, then prick the skin to release the fat, which can be repurposed for making crispy roast potatoes to accompany the main dish.
Kurt Gutenbrunner’s Roast Christmas Goose
1 goose, 10 to 12 pounds (available from D’Artagnan or Quattro’s Game Farm, Saturdays at Union Square Greenmarket)
3 onions, peeled; one quartered, two cut into large dice
3 carrots, cut into large dice
6 stalks celery, cut into large dice
1 apple, quartered
1 orange, quartered
½ bunch fresh thyme
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Previous day: Remove giblets and reserve. Using paper towels, dry the cavity and the exterior of the goose and place on a rack, uncovered, in refrigerator overnight. Remove goose from the refrigerator and bring to room temperature. Preheat oven to 350. (1) If the bird is still moist, dry inside and out with paper towels. Scatter the diced onion, carrots, celery, and reserved giblets in the bottom of a large, shallow roasting pan. Generously salt the cavity and (2) stuff with the quartered apple, orange, and onion, as well as the thyme. With a skewer or fork, prick the skin of the goose all over. Salt and pepper the outside of the bird, (3) truss it, and place directly on top of the diced vegetables. Add 2 cups boiling water to the pan. Roast 2½ to 3 hours (drain some of the rendered fat from the pan periodically with a basting bulb, and reserve for roast potatoes), or until an instant thermometer reads 165 to 175 and the juices run clear. If the skin is not crisp, increase the temperature to 375 and cook for another 10 minutes. Allow the goose to rest for 30 minutes before carving. Serve with braised red cabbage and roasted potatoes.