Goose with sage and onion stuffing

Serves 6
1 goose with giblets (approximately 4kg)
300g shallots
5-6 stems fresh sage
50g butter
150g butter
150g white bread
salt and pepper
1 medium egg
2 tbsp cornflour
sugar
wooden skewers and kitchen string

Peel the shallots and cut in halves or quarters according to size. Pick the leaves off the sage stems and chop finely. Leave a few sprigs whole to use as garnish. Heat the butter in a large pan. Saute the shallots for 4-5 mins until translucent. Add the sage a minutes before the end and saute together. Remove from the heat and leave to cool. Cut the bread into small pieces, mix in with the shallots and season well with salt and pepper. Stir in the egg.
Remove the giblets, neck and excess fat from the goose; chop up the liver finely and stir it in the stuffing mix. Wash the goose thoroughly inside and prick the fat gland, found under the wing. Season the cavity with salt and pepper. Stuff the goose with the sage-bread mix. Close up both ends of the goose using wooden skewers and string. Tie the legs and wings together. Season the outside of the goose and place it on an oven rack over a drip pan. Pour on 1/4L cold water. Roast in a pre-heated oven (175C/gas mark 4) for approximately 4 hrs. Brush the goose with salted water 30 mins from end of cooking time.
Take the goose off the oven rack and keep warm. Pour the cooking juices through a sieve into a pan. Spoon off the fat. Top up this gravy mix to 500ml with water and heat it up. Stir together 5 tbsp of water and the cornflour. Use this to thicken the gravy, heat up again and season with salt, pepper and sugar to taste. Carve and arrange the goose and stuffing as desired on a platter and garnish with the remaining sage sprigs.

Other festive feast recipes from our Christmas 2012 issue:

• Arbroath smokies
• Roast potatoes with herbs and garlic
• Suffolk stewed red cabbage
• Jugged peas
• Poached pears with port

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