By Michael Pendley
Wild goose meat sometimes gets a bad rap when it comes to table fare, and it’s not always undeserved. Depending on the bird’s diet and cooking methods, goose can have a bit of a liver flavor. Snow geese in particular have a reputation for being tough to master in the kitchen, but with snow goose seasons in full swing this time of year, you’ll want to do something useful with that bounty of fresh fowl.
So, what’s the secret to making them taste great? For starters, don’t overcook. Medium-rare to medium is done enough. Second, a nice marinade can go a long way when it comes to taming some of the more undesirable flavors.
This recipe combines a sweet and salty pineapple juice and soy-based marinade that will both improve the flavor of the meat and tenderize it at the same time with the fast cooking times of a screaming hot wok. We’ve used it successfully for Canadas, snows, blues and specs.
My favorite place to stir fry is over a camp stove outdoors in order to prevent the hot wok from smoking up the kitchen, but indoors will work if you open a nearby window or turn on a fan or oven exhaust.
4 Canada goose breast halves or 6 snow goose breast halves, cut into strips
4 tablespoons peanut oil
1 20-ounce can of pineapple chunks, juice reserved
16 ounces frozen stir-fry vegetable blend
8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
8 ounces water chestnuts, sliced
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon Chinese 5-spice powder
1 cup pineapple juice (reserved from chunks)
¼-cup rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
Cooked white rice for serving
- Start by mixing the marinade ingredients. Reserve a quarter of the marinade and set aside.
- Slice the goose breast into thin strips, placing the meat into a zip-style plastic bag, then pour in ¾ of the marinade. (This is a good opportunity to check for any random shot pellets lodged in the meat and remove them before cooking.) Refrigerate for one hour. Don’t over marinate. The citric acid of the pineapple juice can start to “cook” the meat if it’s left in too long.
- Heat the peanut oil in a wok over high heat. Drain the marinade from the goose breast. Stir fry the goose breast in small batches, for three to five minutes, until the surface of the meat is well browned. Move each batch of cooked breast to a covered bowl while you cook remaining meat.
- Stir-fry the vegetables, mushrooms and pineapple until cooked through, but still remain crisp. Return the goose meat to the wok and stir to blend.
- Blend the cornstarch into the reserved marinade until smooth.
- Pour over the reserved marinade, the soy sauce, 5-spice powder and the hoisin. Stir to coat the meat and vegetables. Continue cooking for another three to five minutes until everything is heated through. Serve the stir fry at once over white rice.
Try Out More Recipes with NSSF’s Game Meat Cooking Series
Where hunter and classically trained chef Georgia Pellegrini shares recipes from her book, “Girl Hunter: Revolutionizing the Way We Eat, One Hunt at a Time.”