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Why Boil a Goose Before Roasting It?

You ask the questions, and I give the answers as I know them. As always, you can ask me any questions by checking out my Ask the Chef! page.

A reader asked me a question that I thought I would share with you all:

Can you elaborate why so many recipes call for boiling goose/duck before drying? What do those 5 minutes in boiling water do to the bird?


Albert St.

yung kee roast goose

Doesn't this just sing, "Eat Me!"?

I will admit that at first, I did not know. I checked out my old books from school, and I did not find an answer. I remembered eating this awesome Pekin duck though, and sure enough, that was the technique that they used to make it.
You submerge the duck into boiling water for a couple of minutes, remove it, then set it out to dry. What this does is releases the fat from the skin. When you roast the goose, the skin will then become crispy, and the breast will self-baste with the separated fat.

If you skip that step, the skin might not crisp up while roasting, and you would be left with this sad looking bird indeed.

Remember that we eat with ALL senses, so a step like this would ramp up the look, and mouth feel of the bird when you bite into it. You would have the crunch of the skin, the juiciness of the meat, and the flavor from the fat. Oh, seriously! I am starving right now just thinking of that Pekin duck! Thanks a lot!

Do you have a question for the Well Done Chef? You can ask me any questions by checking out my Ask the Chef! page.

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