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How to roast St. Martin’s goose to perfection

Roasted goose is a traditional dish served on November 11, the St. Martin’s Day. Restaurants are booked weeks in advance, geese – fresh or frozen – desperately sold out. All this so that people can taste this extraordinary delicacy on this day.

St. Martin’s Days goose (more and more often replaced by the cheaper duck) is typically served with both fermented and sweet cabbage and dumplings and washed down with a special type of young wine called Svatomartinské víno (St. Martin’s wine).

We will show you how to roast the goose perfectly so that the meat is tender and delicious. And to have the meal complete, here are the dumpling recipes:



  • 1 goose (or duck)
  • caraway
  • salt
  • apples
  • honey
  • cinnamon
  • water
  • roasting pan with a lid or two roasting pans

The amount of each depends on how big your goose is.

So, how do you roast a goose to perfection?

If you want to have a perfectly roasted goose or duck, you need to have enough time. Enough time is roughly between 10 and 12 hour, however, it depends on the size of the goose (average goose would be around 4,5 – 5 kg). Also, each oven roasts a bit differently, so you have to check on the goose and adjust the temperature as well as the time.

If you bought a frozen goose or duck, obviously you’ll need to defrost it first. If there’s enough time, just leave the goose in the sink to defrost at room temperature. In Czech Republic the geese often come with giblets inside, if that’s the case, take them out and keep them for preparing other dishes.


Peel the apples, cut them in quarters and stuff the goose with them. They will help keep the meat juicy and will add to the flavor.


Put the goose in the pan, salt it and sprinkle it with caraway. Put the lid on and place the pan it in the oven. Roast at 110°C/230°F.

Meanwhile, prepare a mixture that you’ll be smearing the goose with. Mix 1 tbsp of honey with 1/2 tsp of cinnamon and a little water. The mixture should be liquid enough to smear.

goose duck

For the last two hours of roasting, increase the temperature to 160°C/320°F, remove the lid and smear the goose with the mixture at least once every 30 minutes. The sugar in the honey will help make the skin crunchy. Moreover, the goose will release its grease and together with the honey and cinnamon it will give a delicious gravy.

When the goose is done roasting, serve it immediately with sweet and fermented cabbage and knedlíky.

We hope you found our recipe useful and let us know if you’ve ever had a roasted goose on St. Martin’s Day and how you liked it.



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