There is a bit of gaminess to snow geese, but it’s really not as bad as others make it sound. With conservation seasons that allow for high bag limits, we should all be thinking of different ways that we can enjoy this protein. It’s like free meat, falling from the sky! (That is, after all the permit fees, ammo, gear, decoys, time, travel…)
If you did not enjoy snow goose in the past, try grinding it and loading it up with herbs and spices that will enhance the flavor of this dark, earthy meat. After, you can make burgers, taco meat, meatloaf, meatballs—anything with it. I chose to go Middle Eastern this time, a culinary tradition known for its heavy use of spices, which stood up to the snow goose meat well. Then to round out the flavors and add a bit of fat, I incorporated some pork to the ground goose mixture. Served in a pita pocket with tahini sauce and fresh vegetables, the goose went down real easy.
I also can’t reiterate enough the importance of proper field care and storage, especially with waterfowl. Get yourself a proper vacuum sealer—storing waterfowl in frozen tap water makes the meat taste off-putting. This is the last thing you want to do with such a richly flavored meat.
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
- 2 pounds of skinless, boneless snow goose (breast, thigh and legs)
- ½ pound of ground pork
- 1 medium onion
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 1 cup of fresh parsley leaves
- ¼ cup of fresh mint leaves
- ½ teaspoon of ground allspice
- ¼ teaspoon of cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon of ground cardamom
- ½ teaspoon of ground sumac
- ¼ cup of breadcrumbs (optional)
- 1 teaspoon of kosher salt or to taste
- Freshly cracked pepper
- Vegetable oil, for brushing
- Pita pocket bread
- Lettuce, your favorite
- English cucumber, sliced
- Tomatoes, sliced
- Tahini and lemon dressing (see note)
Note: If you can’t find bottled tahini salad dressing, make it at home by combining 1/3 cup of tahini paste, 1/3 cup of warm water, 2 cloves of minced garlic, ¼ cup of lemon juice, pinch of salt and pinch of sugar. Add more water to thin out sauce if needed.
1. Cut snow goose meat into large chunks, pat dry with paper towels and then place meat in the freezer for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, finely chop onion, garlic, parsley and mint in a food processor, set aside. Next, sanitize meat grinder thoroughly, and then grind chilled goose once through the coarse plate. If you choose to grind your own pork, complete this step at this time.
2. In a large bowl, thoroughly combine ground goose, pork, onion-herb mixture, allspice, cayenne pepper, cardamom, sumac, salt and pepper. If you find mixture too wet, add breadcrumbs.
3. Prepare grill for direct, high-heat cooking. Form meat around skewers and brush with oil—flat skewers work best. (If using wooden skewers, presoak them in water.) Grill for 6-10 minutes, or until cooked through. Do not overcook to avoid dryness.
4. Once cooked, pull meat from skewers. Cut pita bread in half and fill with lettuce, cucumber, tomato, kofta kebab, and drizzle with tahini sauce. Choose a pita bread that is sturdy and will not fall apart.