General Tso’s Spicy Goose Breast
I’ll admit it — goose breast, Canada goose breast in particular, doesn’t make a lot of wild game top 10 lists. I’ve seen the flavor described as “rich and robust,” and that it is. The high iron content, while being nutritious, can give the cooked goose a bit of liver-y flavor that many wild game eaters don’t enjoy. An overnight soak in a saltwater brine helps remove some of the strong flavor, so I usually start the dish the night before by adding the goose breast to 1 quart of water with ½ cup of salt dissolved in it. Cover and refrigerate.
An overnight soak in a saltwater brine helps to mellow the iron flavor of the goose meat.
While they don’t always get high marks in the kitchen, geese sure are fun to hunt. When that line of high-flying Canadas answers your call and turns on a dime to descend into your decoy spread, it’s one heck of a rush. And if we’re gonna hunt them, we need to be eating them.
This version of the classic takeout General Tso’s is perfect for anyone who isn’t overly fond of goose breast.
If you have tried other goose recipes that left you a bit underwhelmed, turn to this favorite Chinese takeout-style recipe.
The first General Tso’s chicken was likely cooked by a Chinese chef, Peng Chang-kuei, while he was exiled in Taiwan in the 1950s. The dish was Americanized by sweetening the sauce and using boneless chicken by a New York City chef named Tsung Ting Wang in the 1970s. It was a hit with the American consumer and quickly became a staple dish at most Chinese restaurants.
The crispy coating and spicy sauce in this recipe help soften the flavor of the goose, making it an excellent choice for diners who might not always enjoy goose breast cooked other ways.
You can cook this dish in a wok or a large skillet. The trick is to cook the goose breast hot and fast so that it gets a crispy crust without overcooking. To keep the crust from getting soft, plate and serve the dish quickly once it has been sauced.
Start by cutting the goose breasts into bite-size pieces 1-inch pieces. Use paper towels to blot any excess moisture from the goose breasts.
Cut the brined goose into 1-inch cubes.
Toss the goose meat in ¾ cup of cornstarch to evenly coat all sides of the goose breast.
Toss the meat in cornstarch to evenly coat all surfaces before frying.
Mix the sauce ingredients and set aside.
Mix the sauce ingredients well before starting the cooking process.
Heat ¼ inch of oil in a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil starts to smoke just a bit, add the goose breast, taking care to keep the pieces separate and not overcrowd the pan. If you need to, cook the goose in batches so that each piece is brown and crispy. Cook the goose for 10-12 minutes, turning often. Move the goose to a warm platter and cover loosely with foil.
Fry or stir-fry the goose breast until crispy and golden, but don’t overcook.
Reduce the heat to medium and add the ginger, garlic, red pepper flakes and broccoli. Stir-fry until the broccoli is just tender but still has a nice bite.
Stir-fry the broccoli until cooked through but still a bit crisp.
Return the goose breast to the pan and pour over the sauce. Bring to a boil and cook until the sauce has thickened and evenly coated the goose breast.
Return the cooked goose to the pan, add the sauce, and bring to a boil until thickened.
Top with sesame seeds and sliced green onions as a garnish and serve over rice.
1-2 pounds goose breast, cut into 1-inch pieces
¾ cup cornstarch
Oil for stir-frying
2 tablespoons minced ginger
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 head of broccoli, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon sesame seeds and 1 green onion, thinly sliced for garnish
Prepared rice for serving
½ cup cold water
6 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons rice vinegar, or more to taste
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
4 tablespoons raw sugar
1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch