Last Friday we went down to our local butcher to see what they had to tempt us to roast up that weekend. James was edging towards a massive and beautiful looking hunk of beef, but I couldn’t take my eyes off a very large shoulder of goat. I’d never cooked it before, so while I let James talk through the benefits of the enormous fore rib of beef my mind was actively whirring as to what the hell I was going to do with that shoulder of goat. We were getting the goat.
We got the goat and this is what we did with it, after some very helpful tips from the butcher himself. Most importantly, not to just roast it as the resulting meat would be dry and tough. This served 8 with left overs (any suggestions welcome?) and was very tasty indeed – sort of like a less sweet lamb, maybe a bit closer to mutton but really it’s its own beast.
1 shoulder of goat
1 bottle red wine
3 slices orange
1 bunch rosemary
1 bunch thyme
2 sticks celery
4 cloves garlic
3 star anise
2 sticks cinnamon
3 bay leaves
The day before you are going to cook the goat, place it in a large dish / bowl, pour over the wine, add the orange slices and about 6 sprigs rosemary and 6 sprigs thyme. Cover with a little water (or more wine if you’re feeling flash) until all the meat is submerged. Cover with film and place in the fridge for at least 8 hours.
Preheat the oven to 160c. Remove from the fridge and take the goat out of the liquid and place to the side. In a pot that will eventually be able to hold the goat, pour in the marinading liquid. Over a high heat, bubble this liquid down by about a third (James made me remove the orange at this point, but you could leave it in). Meanwhile, heat a knob of butter and some oil in pan and roughly chop the onion, carrots and celery. Add to the pan and cook until very lightly caramelised. Bruise the garlic with the back of your knife and add to the pan with the veg for a couple of minutes.
Once the wine has reduced, add the veg to it along with the star anise, cinnamon, bay and the rest of the herbs. Finally place the goat on top and cover (with tin foil if the lid won’t fit). Place in the preheated oven for about 6 hours until you can see the meat shrinking away from the bone.
Take the goat out of the liquid and let sit for about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, strain some of the fat off the braising liquid and then mash the veg up into it. Bubble down, strain and use as a gravy. Remove the meat from the bone and serve with the gravy and whatever else you fancy.