- 8- to 9-pound fresh Toulouse goose (source: Turkana Farms, Germantown)
- 4 lemons
- 3 limes
- 1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
- small handful each of parsley sprigs, thyme and sage, plus extra for garnish
- a little olive oil for browning
- optional 3 tablespoons clear honey
- 1 tablespoon thyme leaf
Preheat oven to 180˚F.
- If the goose is ready-trussed, loosen the string and pull out the legs and wings a little—this helps the bird cook better. Check the inside of the bird and remove any giblets or pads of fat. Using the tip of a sharp knife, lightly score the breast and leg skin in a criss-cross. This helps the fat to render down more quickly during roasting.
- Grate the zest from the lemons and limes. Mix with 2 teaspoons fine sea salt, the five-spice powder and pepper to taste. Season the cavity of the goose generously with salt, then rub the citrus mix well into the skin and sprinkle some inside the cavity.
- Stuff the zested fruit and the herb sprigs inside the bird and set aside for at least 15 minutes. (This can be done up to a day ahead and kept refrigerated.)
- Place the goose in a pan, cover with foil, and bake at 180˚F for 3 1/2 hours. Every 30 minutes or so, baste the bird with the pan juices, then pour off the fat through a sieve into a large heatproof bowl. You will end up with at least a liter of luscious fat—save this for potatoes or other vegetables.
- At the end of the cooking time, turn oven up to 350˚F and finish the bird at 350°F for 15 minutes.
- Remove the goose from the oven, cover loosely with fresh foil and let it rest for at least 30 minutes. (The bird will not go cold, but will be moist and easier to carve.)