In these days of factory- and battery-farming, goose is becoming a bit of a rarity. But if you can get your hands on one, it makes a wonderful alternative to a flavourless turkey for those special occasions when you need to feed a lot of people.
Make sure your goose is at room temperature before you start. Preheat your oven to 220°C (428°F). Dry the goose inside and out, and prick the skin all over with a needle, sharp skewer, or cocktail stick. The idea of this is to let the fat escape - you want to penetrate the skin only, not the flesh.
Season the goose with salt and pepper, place it on a wire rack over a roasting tin, and stick it in the hot oven for 30 minutes. At the end of this time, pour off any fat and juice that has come out of the bird, turn the oven down to 180°C (356°F), and cook for 14 minutes per 450g / pound. Pour off more fat every half hour or so.
I put the fat and juices into the freezer while the goose is cooking. This helps separate the fat from the juices. You'll want the fat to roast potatoes in, and the juice to add to the gravy.
When the goose is cooked, remove it from the oven, tent it in foil and let it rest for 20 minutes before carving.
Serve with cranberry stuffing, goose-fat roast potatoes, vegetables of your choice and a gravy made from the goose juice.