In terms of flavor, the Canada goose is definitely the most undeservedly criticized of wild birds. While I’ll concede a portion of its unsavory reputation is owed to its diet, which is often dependent on its environment, it’s my firm belief that this bird is simply prepared and cooked incorrectly more often than not.
For starters, I’d never recommend roasting a whole Canada goose. This goose should be butchered and its sections cooked differently. Its harder working parts, like its legs and wings, require low-and-slow cooking techniques to break down tough muscles, but the breasts are delicious medium-rare when prepared properly.
Because waterfowl skin is the bacon of wild birds, I always pluck any duck or goose I am going to pan sear. I recommend you do the same. I often dry pluck my ducks and geese. It takes just a few minutes more to pull out a goose’s breast feathers prior to breasting out. Don’t worry about plucking all those thin, stray hairs—they’ll burn off easily in the pan and you’ll never know they were there.
I brine all my wild birds, and it makes a world of difference. A good brine infuses the bird with flavor but also makes certain it retains moisture while cooking, so it’s guaranteed to be tastier AND juicier. A brine will also help remove any excess blood and “gamey” flavors.