Geese often create a culinary dilemma for hunters. They are fun to hunt, sure, but most do not enjoy eating them. Geese are movers. They have a dark red meat with a deep flavor. They can also live for a long time. This does not a delicious animal make. Typically, people resort to turning their goose harvest into jerky. While I am a fan of jerky, I think goose can work very well in other recipes. Corned goose, goose pastrami and goose leg confit are just some of the great dishes that can be made. While these recipes are awesome, I understand that hunters also want to know what to do with a non-cured hunk of breast meat.
This recipe is for just that occasion. It calls for diced breast meat, but ground leg meat will work too (Don’t use diced leg meat, it will be too tough). The recipe is an easy one pot white bean chili. Feel free to substitute the bean variety of your choice, however. This could just as easily, and deliciously, be a black bean chili.
White Bean and Goose Chili
2 slices of bacon, raw and cut into thin strips
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ medium onion, diced
1 jalapeno, diced, seeded
1 Tbs. canola oil
2 goose breasts, cut into ½ inch cubes (this is done best when the goose meat is still slightly frozen)
1 can (12 oz) white beans
1 tsp. thyme leaves, fresh
1 tsp. Mexican oregano, dried
2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 bay leaves
2 cups chicken stock (low sodium store bought it just fine)
1 tsp. red chili flakes
Salt and pepper
Grated jack cheese
Fresh slices of jalapeno
- Heat a 10-inch cast iron or thick sided sauté pan on medium heat. Add the bacon and cook it until it is crispy. Next add the garlic, onion and jalapeno. Cook until the onion is translucent and the garlic is fragrant. Remove the mixture from the pan and reserve.
- Add the canola oil to the pan, heat until almost smoking. Add the cubed goose breasts to the pan and brown them for 4 minutes. The more color the more flavor.
- Add back in the onion and bacon mixture. Cook for one minute together then add the remaining, non-optional ingredients. Simmer the mix on low for 1 hour, covered, until the goose is tender. You might need to add a little water as time goes on.
- Serve this dish with avocado slices, jack cheese and fresh sliced jalapeños.
*A version of this article first appeared in Northwest Sportsman Magazine.
Photos by author.