Goose - Food Facts & History - Food Reference canada goose history



For unexplainable reasons, Europeans, particularly north Europeans, have always been fond of goose, whereas in North America the popularity of kpaxjsbg. kjøpe canada goose onlinethis fowl is more or less concentrated on Christmas and New Year’s Eve.

Goose meat is darker (including the breast), fuller bodied, and more intensely flavoured than turkey. It is fatter and more gamy than duck. Of all fowl, goose meat offers the most opportunities to match with wine.

Most associate Christmas goose with Victorian England. During the 19th century, in England, geese were served (like practically all other animals) at an older age than those of today – up to nine months as opposed to four to six months. Older birds are tough and the meat must be tenderized before cooking (through marination and aging) before cooking.

Today’s geese still have a whiff of gaminess, but just enough to appeal to the connoisseur. There is no need to tenderize chemically or mechanically as feeding and raising techniques have improved. Turkey has been crossbred to the extent that its meat is more or less mushy; the birds are fed with specifically manufactures feed. Geese have been spared this fate, because unlike turkeys, crossbreeding geese is much more difficult. The natural cycle of raising geese is still in tact: hatching, between April and July, and slaughter in September.

The U S A is a large producer of geese- California, Pennsylvania, and New York State produce most. Of course France produces a lot, as does Hungary, Poland and Israel, mostly for foie gras d’oie (fattened goose liver). Fattened goose liver is exported to France to be processed to pate ad many other products, Carcasses are used for roasting in Hungary and Poland.

For centuries goose fat has been hailed as tasty and texturally rich, French are famous for their cassoulet using goose fat, parts beans and vegetable, but most famous of all now is confit of goose or duck. Confit means cooked in its own fat. If properly doe a confit of goose or duck is crisp, deliciously rich, and delightfully satisfying. Also it can be stored for months. White English, grey Toulouse and Chinese geese are the most popular with goose farms. Most geese are fed a mixture of corn, wheat and soybeans, although a few farmers feed their animals with vegetables including salads in California.

Mature geese carcasses weigh 18 – 19 lbs. ( 8 – 9 kg) although young animals weighing 10 – 14 lbs ( 4 ½ to 5 ½ Kg) are more popular with housewives. The yield improves with mature animals. Free-range fresh geese tend to be more tender than those marketed frozen.

Goose contains a high proportion of fat and must be properly cooked to provide the eating pleasure connoisseurs expect. A leg of roasted goose swimming in its own fat would hardly please anyone, except maybe a hard-working farmer who has a chance to sample it once a year.

You can either blanch the bird for a few minutes, and prick the skin to release the fat, or ‘crisp” the carcass in the refrigerator for a week, or roast for four hours at 250F (125C) in a convection oven, or start roasting at 475F (235C) for 15 minutes and reduce the heat to 375F  (180C) until done. Obviously, the bird must be basted frequently to prevent drying.

You can stuff geese with dried fruits (resins, figs, or prunes, marinated in Armagnac or Cognac or rum). Rye or black bread is more suitable than regular white bread The stuffing can be cooked separately and passed around.  The bird would smell more appealing if stuffed with apples, onion, celery, orange or lemon.


Unlike turkey, roast goose can be served without a sauce, as the meat is moist, but would benefit from the use of chutney made using nuts, and fall fruits (grape juice, apples, pears, figs, walnuts and hazelnuts).

In the past decade, North American gourmets discovered the tantalizing taste and texture of fattened goose liver.
It can be pan seared and served with a reduction of port wine, or simply sautéed to enrich lean cuts of grilled meat, or processed to pate, bloc, parfait, just to name a few methods of preparation.

Egyptians and Romans of antiquity knew about this delicacy, and maintained farms feeding geese with dried figs. Nowadays, geese are force fed with corn much.

Force-feeding is by all accounts a cruel way of raising an animal, but to date, other methods proved unsuccessful. In fact by force-feeding (by means of a long neck funnel stuck into the beak of the bird), the liver is made incapable of functioning, thus becoming excessively fatty and smooth. French products are very expensive in North America, and hence in both Quebec and New York State (Hudson Valley) several farms started specializing in producing fattened goose liver. Most go to restaurants in New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver. Some are exported.

Properly prepared fattened goose liver is an absolute delicacy for those who love smooth textured flavourful meat. Connoisseurs pair goose liver with fine Sauternes, or Beerenauslese or Tokaji (three or four puttonyos) wines. They claim this to be a match made in heaven!

Article contributed by Hrayr Berberoglu, a Professor Emeritus of Hospitality and Tourism Management specializing in Food and Beverage. Books by H. Berberoglu

Note: Here is an email I received about this article and my response.
April 30, 2004
Dear James,
     Publishing the article by Hrayr Berberoglu promoting cruel torture of geese is shameful and brings discredit to your website.
     Educating the public about the methods of food production and how to create nutritious and good tasting meals is a positive contribution, however the ethical aspects of farming deserve consideration. Interest in organic, healthy and cruelty free produce is at a peak, and I believe that your website would benefit by supporting these favourable trends.
  I urge you to consider removing the offensive glorification of this barabaric (sic) practice. All species, especially those animals that are destined for the cooking pot, deserve to be treated with the same respect that we ourselves expect.
Best regards,    Russell Hawkins

Response from publisher, Chef James:
April 2004 - Hello Russell,
Thank you for your email, I always appreciate comments about the Food Reference Website.
     You object to the article on goose liver. I have also received email from others who object to information on the following subjects:
Dog meat, horse meat, mule, llama, donkey, goat, insects, veal, chicken, beef, coconut crabs, mahi-mahi (dolphin), swordfish, tuna, shark, rays, trout, salmon, any animal source of food, fast food, snack food, high fat foods, high sugar foods, various ethnic foods, American food, French food, McDonald's, KFC, any mention of how food is produced, vegetarians, vegans, restaurant food, etc., etc., etc.

(excerpt from your email)>>”I urge you to consider removing...”
     Rather than have a website with empty pages, I choose to allow different viewpoints to be heard, rather than censoring information.
     I happen to believe that people have a right to information, and the right to make their own decisions as to what and how they eat. I may agree with some of your opinion, but I will not limit the information on the website to one side of an issue.
     The article may say that goose liver is delicious, but it also states that force-feeding is a cruel way of raising an animal.
     The Food Reference website has about 14,500 pages now, and its primary focus is FACT about food history and culture.  There are many other websites out there that promote specific agendas. The Food Reference website deals primarily with facts, and it is a fact that goose liver is produced and eaten.
     If nothing was ever published about it, no one would have the knowledge to object to it.
     You have a perfect right to your viewpoint, and I will include your email with the article to provide you with an open forum for that viewpoint.

Regards from Paradise,
James T. Ehler (Webmaster, chef, writer, publisher)

November, 2007 Another thoughtful email on the subject from someone with personal knowledge of the subject:

     I was interested in reading your article on raising geese for meat and came across the replies re fattened liver and ethical issues involved.
     I am British but moved to rural France 3 years ago, I have always held a view on the cruelty of force feeding geese - ie it should be abolished. However, after living here in the country for 3 years, I was surprised last year to find that my opinion is less forceful.
     I do not eat foie gras, never have and probably never will, my changed attitude related to the mental image I always had of some poor goose held against its will, furiously trying to stop being forcefed corn. Last year I helped one neighbour and discussed my issue with her, she just laughed at me and asked me to come back at feeding time in her barn. I went and basically was amazed, she rattled her tin of food and the geese came running (they were organically raised and free range), they paitently waited to be "forcefed", needed no restraints and were not distressed by the experience. They were in all other ways as "healthy" in terms of being happy, as the non fatty geese, not confined and slaughtered as with all others at around 24 weeks. This was a far cry from what I expected. Force fed is such an emotive word, perhaps there are producers whose geese do not "line up", are confined or are distressed, but, in my village area (the duck and geese region of France) my notion of force feeding has been changed.
     Personally, I would prefer all animals to have a good quality of life before slaughter, and although I know the issue of force feeding is abhorrent to most people, the actuality of it did not match my understanding. Those geese had a better life running free range than some poor battery hen or goose for mass market production. Thats why Foie Gras costs!

Sara Breese


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Canada Word Searches, Crosswords and Puzzles for Kids

Free Online and Printable Canada Day-Themed Games and Puzzles

Family working on jigsaw puzzle
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Here's a fun way to teach children about the country of Canada. These free word search puzzles using various themes related to Canada are great practice for spelling Canadian place names as well as being a good tool to reinforce concepts about the history, climate, and geography of the country. Play them online or print and solve on paper.

Some of these free puzzles are in Adobe PDF format. If you need to download and install the free Adobe Acrobat reader, click here.

Canada Word Search Puzzles to Print

Parents and educators looking for printable worksheets on Canada can make use of these easy to challenging games, listed in order of difficulty. 

  • Canada Word Search - Three-word search games for beginners can be found here. A good choice for early readers, the easy version of the puzzle uses pictures as well as words to denote the five themed entries. Older children will prefer the regular word search game with 17 Canada-related words in a medium-sized grid. There's also a challenging word search puzzle in which the name of the ten provinces and territories that make up the country are hidden in a large grid of jumbled letters. All of these games are available in either black and white or color.
  • Canada Day Word Search | Mots-Cachés - Fête du Canada - This word game has a list of ten words consisting of symbols, places or things associated with the country of Canada. Play it in either of Canada's official languages; English or French.
  • Canada Word Searches - Here, you'll find two-word search games devoted to Canada. The easier one has a list of ten words consisting of animals, symbols or games associated with the country. The more challenging 14-word game features the names of the provincial, territorial and federal capital cities in a large grid of letters.
  • Canada Day Word Search - The 18 words featured in this game all have to do with Canada's confederation. Solution provided.
  • Canada Day Word Search | Mots-Cachés - Fête du Canada - This challenging word search game features 28 words about Canada, including the nation's provinces and territories.
  • Canada Word Search Geography Puzzle - This challenging word search worksheet has a whopping 35 words about Canada that need finding in a large grid of letters. Solution provided.
  • Word Search - Canada Map - The most difficult word search listed here, this puzzle boasts of 40 Canada-related words in a grid which is shaped like the country.

Canada Word Search Games to Play Online

If you prefer playing word seek games online, here are several easy to challenging puzzles to play on your computer.

  • Word Search Canada - A 20-word puzzle which lists the provinces as well as symbols of the country.

Canada Crossword Puzzles to Print

Looking for a fun educational activity to help reinforce students' knowledge of Canada and the people who inhabit it? These crosswords are a great way for puzzlers of all ages to learn new words as well as important facts about Canada.

The crossword puzzle worksheets featured here examine various aspects of the country and its history.

All use the freeform format commonly used in most educational crossword games. The puzzles are listed in order of difficulty, from the easiest to the most challenging.

  • Confederation Crossword - 12 entries pertaining to Canada's confederation and the men who made it happen are featured in this freeform crossword from Collections Canada. Solution provided.
  • Canada Crossword - 13 words related to Canada's geography, symbols and government appear in this easy crossword puzzle worksheet.
  • Canada Crossword Puzzle Worksheet - This 15-word crossword game is fairly challenging and requires a good knowledge of the country, its provinces and cities, political structures and indigenous people.
  • Aspects of Government Crossword Puzzle - From Parks Canada, a 17-word puzzle that explores Canada's parliamentary system of government.
  • Canadian Prime Ministers - This crossword contains 20 trivia questions regarding the men and women who have served in Canada's highest office.
  • Aboriginal Treaties and Relations Crossword - The 20 entries in this puzzle look at the history of Canada's first nations and their (often stormy) relations with European settlers.
  • Pioneers and Immigrants Crossword - This 20-word crossword puzzle focuses on immigrants to the country; their origins, where they settled, and reasons for emigrating.
  • Canada's Constitutional History Crossword - This challenging crossword game has 26 clues pertaining to the history of the country and the institutions which govern it.

Canada Crossword Puzzles to Play Online

These interactive crossword puzzles can be played on your computer. For older crossword puzzle solvers.

  • Canadiana Crossword Puzzle - An interactive criss-cross puzzle with 30 entries pertaining to Canadian history, geography, politics, and celebrities.
  • All About Canada Crossword Puzzle - This crossword looks at the towns, cities, lakes, rivers, people and historical sites of Canada.
  • CANADA: A People's History Crosswords - If you prefer crossword puzzles that follow the standard, American-style format, then try these games by crossword constructor Kelly Anne Buchanan. The crossword puzzles featured here are based on episodes of the CBC series Canada: A People's History. Though these puzzles don't necessarily adhere to the standards used by most print publications (i.e., two-letter entries, etc.), nevertheless they are a fun challenge and a great way to increase your knowledge of Canada's history. Seventeen puzzles, each one pertaining to a particular episode, are available for your puzzling pleasure. Play them online or print and solve. These games are better suited to older children and adults.

Canada Jigsaw Puzzles to Print

These free jigsaw puzzle games all feature themes such as flags and other symbols of the country, its spectacular scenery and the animals which inhabit it.

For a fun activity this Canada Day, try printing out this free jigsaw puzzle.

  • Oh, Canada! Jigsaw Puzzle Craft - Print the map of Canada, color and cut out the puzzle pieces and assemble for a fun and educational activity.

Canada Jigsaw Puzzles to Play Online

These puzzles use the Jigzone interface and are a good choice for beginners. Older solvers, however, can change the piece cut and the number of pieces for a more challenging game.

  • Canada's Map, Flag, and Beaver - National Symbols Jigsaw Puzzle - This very easy six-piece jigsaw game is good for very young solvers.
  • Child Mountie Jigsaw Puzzle - Another six-piece game for kids at the primary school level.

Scenes of Canada Jigsaw Puzzles

48-piece classic cut puzzles from JigZone.

  • BC Inlet
  • Lake Minnewanka
  • Canada Geese Jigsaw Puzzle - Native to the arctic and temperate regions of North America, these birds can often be seen flying by during their annual migration. The number of pieces in this interactive puzzle can range from nine to 180.
  • Canada Map Jigsaw Puzzle - This online drag-and-drop jigsaw puzzle game helps youngsters learn about the geography of Canada and the names of its provinces.

Canada Maze Puzzles to Print

Youngsters at the pre and primary school levels can play these puzzling activities that don't require good spelling or learning new vocabulary words. These printable mazes and connect-the-dot puzzles are a great way for kids to develop their observation and counting skills. These puzzle games all make use of themes pertaining to the country of Canada or its Canada Day celebration.

Maze puzzles are fun to solve for puzzling minds of all ages. Success in navigating a maze requires good concentration as well as the use of strategic planning skills. Below, we have several easy to challenging maze games with Canadian themes to print and solve.

  • Canada Goose Maze - In this easy maze puzzle, the object is to help the Canada Goose find his pond.
  • Canada Day Maze Puzzles - Here, you'll find two Canada Day maze puzzles of medium difficulty: help the boy find the Canada Day fireworks and help the Canada Day patriot find all the flags.
  • Canada Maze Worksheet - Help the man find his way to Canada in this challenging maze game.

Canada Connect-the-Dot Puzzles to Print

Young children can gain practice in identifying numbers and putting them in sequence with these easy to challenging dot-to-dot activities.

  • Canada Connect-the-Dots - Three themed dot-to-dot games for your puzzling pleasure: Maple Leaf (to 25), Canada Flag (to 8) and Map of Canada (to 36).
  • Busy Beaver Dot-to-Dot - From the Canadian Coast Guard, a 66-dot game depicting a cartoon beaver making a phone call.
  • Dot-to-Dot Mystery Map - Connect the dots in the puzzle. When finished, use an atlas or globe to figure out the mystery country.

Canada Encryption Puzzles

For older puzzlers with a good base in reading and writing, we have themed word scrambles and cryptogram puzzles with themes related to Canada. Or, try these quizzes and test your knowledge of Canada and its history, geography, and the people who have made their mark in the country.

In these puzzles, a simple substitution cipher is used to break the code. These puzzles are print only.

  • Girl Guides Cryptogram - Solve this easy cryptogram puzzle to discover a phrase well-known in the Girl Guides of Canada program (Girl Scouts in the USA).
  • Bella Coola Heritage Website Cryptogram - Two cryptogram puzzles with themes related to a famous explorer of Canada. One puzzle is fairly short, the other is quite long.
  • Brownies Cryptogram - No, this doesn't refer to a decadent chocolate bar cookie, but too young girls aged 7 to 8 participating in the Girl Guide program (Girl Scouts in the USA).
  • Canada Cryptogram - This puzzle is part word scramble and part cryptogram. First, unscramble the words. Then take the numbered letters and place them in the box with the corresponding number to complete the answer to the riddle. Print.

Canada Quiz Games

Are you a crackerjack Canada connoisseur? Try these free online quiz games and find out how many fun facts you know about Canada.

  • Canadian Geography Quizzes - A number of fun quizzes pertaining to Canada's land and waterways, its people, history and much more. These games are available at various difficulty levels from beginner to expert.
  • The Canada Quiz- -Test your knowledge of the geographic location of the provinces of Canada with this interactive quiz.
  • Canadian Capitals - In this quiz game, the object is to match each capital city with the corresponding Canadian province.
  • Canada Vocabulary Quiz - Match the Canada vocabulary words with the definitions. The words used designate place names or terms used to describe certain characteristics of the country and its people.
  • Canada Quiz - Interactive trivia quiz for intermediate puzzlers.

Canadian Rags to Riches

These quizzes operate on the same principle as the popular game show Who Wants to be a Millionaire?. Take the quiz and see if you can answer all the questions about Canadian geography.

  • Canadian Rags to Riches - A
  • Canadian Rags to Riches - B
  • Canadian Rags to Riches - C