The way I cook a goose is very simple. Here are a few things you need to understand about geese and cooking them especially.
Make sure the goose is completely thawed out before you attempt to cook it. Because a goose is fatty, if there is any frozen spots in it, this will alter the way it cooks. You have to make sure it cooks evenly.
You need either a smoker, or a very deep sided roasting pan. I use a Brinkman Smoker. In the smoker, I use apple wood. And always a water pan. The idea is you want the goose to drip away all the fat from the body cavity as possible. Plus you want even heat. A goose can take a long time in these low temperature smokers. The larger the goose the longer it takes. a 5-7 pound goose is about perfect. 8 hours is not uncommon. But rely on the thermometer. And make sure when you check foul with a meat thermometer, you never let the end of it touch bone. You can get a false reading.
In a bowl I like to pour a 1/2 cup of orange juice, zest some of the peel in there, add about a teaspoon of salt, pepper to your liking, and if you have a juicer, (My mother ) used to juice a granny smith apple and then take the pulp out of the catch cup and add that mashed apple. I have just mashed an apple. Mix all of this together. It will make kind of a liquid paste.
Now you need to take a sharp knife. I like a filet knife and make about 5 X's cut to the breast of the skin, and a couple on the back of the goose. This is to allow the fat under the skin to work out of the bird. Also, pull the legs towards you and make a cut in just the skin between the leg and the side of the goose.
Inside the body cavity of the goose, add a chunked up slice of bread. This is to absorb the goose fat. I do not eat any of the stuff inside the goose, as it is fatty. I also like to peel an orange and an apple, and separate the orange into slices and cut the apple into chunks. Add that to the bread. This will make the juices that escape the bird add a flavor.
Now you want to rub the outside of the goose with that paste mixture. Put the most of it on the breast of the goose. As you cook the goose this stuff melts and kind of drizzles the bird with the flavors. Some add honey to the paste. I wait and half way when the bird is done, I drizzle honey over the breast. This will somewhat caramelize as if cooks and makes for a glaze.
Do not over cook a goose. If you do they get tough. 165-170?s for a internal temperature is good. When you have the body temperature to that degree, remove the goose, set it on a platter, and cover it in tin foil and let it sit 15-20 minutes and stew. While it sits for that 15 minutes, all the fruit covered juices will be absorbed back in the meat.
If you are going to use a deep sided roasting pan, make sure the goose is on a rack. Treat it just like described, but when you first put that in the oven, you want a very high temperature .... like 450 degrees. Leave it in there like that for about 20 minutes. This is melting the fat from under the skin. After that 20 minutes, you can drop the temperature down to 350 or 375 and let it roast. Sometimes it is necessary to drain the goose fat off it when cooking. The honey will caramelize real nice in the oven.
Again, after it reaches temperature, remove it, and cover it in tin foil to rest. After the 20 minutes it rests, carve the breast meat. Sometimes the legs and wings can be strong tasting, but when we were kids, my Dad shot a lot of geese and we learned to eat that part of the bird. Heck.. we'd eat anything that was set on the table.
Roast goose is very good if done right. This is how I cook it. And I have eaten it and ducks for years, cooked like this.
My short-term memory is not as sharp as it used to be.
Also, my short-term memory's not as sharp as it used to be.