New Years at Lake Cayuga, New York

Paul/NH

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Took my third trip in four years out to Seneca Falls/Waterloo, NY to hunt Cayuga Lake with Finger Lakes Hunting Service. Three day hunt planned for 12/30, 12/31 & 1/1. Group of four of us including HC'er Grey Wolf. I missed day 1 due to a last minute personal obligation. Best hunting of the three trips by far... birds were concentrated due to a lot of the smaller waters and much of Lake Cayuga itself frozen, and the weather has birds migrating hard with new birds filing into the area to replace the educated ones.

Day 1: 3 hunters and guide - 12 bird limit by 9:30am

goose day 1.jpg

Day 2: 5 hunters (joined by a regular and his pups) and guide - 17 birds, 18 bird limit minus one lost cripple...they flew late 10-11:30 was the best time that day - wind and snow all morning. Done about noon.

goose day 2.jpg

Day 3: 4 hunters plus guide - 15 bird limit by 10:30

goose day 3.jpg


Great time, would have loved another day or two!!!!
 

JDK

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Very nice Paul

Did you see any snows?
 

Big D

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Great way to start the new year. That's a pile of birds.
 

Paul/NH

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Nice pics! Looks like fun. I heard they are not to good eating?
They are delicious*. I breast them out, and most of the time also take the legs. I have never plucked a full goose to cook whole. * I think the key is to not overcook them if you are eating them "straight" - to me, as with duck, once you go past med rare they start getting dry and livery.

The easiest way I make the breasts are to salt and pepper them and let them stand for a bit to get to room temp. Get a cast iron pan good and hot with some olive oil as you also get the oven up to 350deg. Sear the breast whole for 2-3min on each side - I add a "steak weight" on top of them to help keep them from shrinking up and getting thicker. Then put the pan into the oven and cook them for 7-9min. Timing depends on the size of the breast for both the sear and the oven. Let sit for a few minutes and slice across the grain. I honestly like this as much as venison, and its very comparable.

The legs have a lot of fat - goose fat - stuff that fancy pants people will pay big money for. I use the legs in a slow braise recipe - basically browning them up quick in a pan and then braising for 2-3 hours in the oven with shallots, celery, carrots, red wine, red wine vinegar, garlic, bay leaves, thyme, rosemary and beef broth at a low temp (250). Outstanding!!

Then, as mentioned, there are always poppers. Half & clean out a bunch of jalepenos, slice a goose breast into sections that will tuck into the halves, wrap with a half slice of bacon and secure with a toothpick. Lay a dbl thickness of foil on the grill and cook them up until the bacon is crisp. For an added workout for your heart, serve with queso to dip in. Great way to use a breast or two that took more than its fair share of BBs. Apparently they smell so good they give you a dopey, psychotic look in your face... or its just me... And for the most part these are NOT hot... the majority of the heat of the jalepenos comes from the seeds and veins inside that you clean out - not just the white spongy stuff the seeds grow off of, but the veins that run the length of the pepper. Once in a while you'll hit a hot one, but you can eat a plate of these and not regret it the next day off the stern...
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Big D

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Never had goose but you sure make it sound good. Your a regular gourmet.
 

Gwlambo

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Great stuff - what a fun hunt. I took your recipe and did it with some pheasant and chukars. People loved them. I am not a huge fan of the chukars so I think the idea of putting anything with jalape?os and bacon is going to work. I probably should braise them with butter too!
 

Paul/NH

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Never had goose but you sure make it sound good. Your a regular gourmet.
Not really, but my waistline gives away that I know how to cook a few good things, and certainly how to eat them! :cool:
 

Mainewoods

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A fresh Canadian goose breast, cooked medium rare with some garlic taste like steak to me.
 
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