At the beginning of this month I cooked a goat feast for my dad as a belated Father’s Day gift. I had been planning the 6 course meal for weeks, and was so excited when the day finally rolled around. It turned out to be an amazing meal. I took pictures, but you’ll have to excuse them for not being the best, since I was too busy cooking and eating to get decent pictures! We started with a naan “pizza” for an appetizer. I sauteed some sliced king trumpet mushrooms in olive oil and sprinkled them with some kosher salt. Then I spread the mushrooms over pieces of naan bread, sprinkled them with a healthy dose of shredded Cypress Grove Midnight Moon cheese and put them into the oven under the broiler until the edges of the naan were crispy and brown and the cheese had melted.
The meaty flavor of the mushrooms was so good paired with the nutty creamy and slightly tangy flavors of the aged Midnight Moon goat cheese, and the chewy slightly crisp naan made the perfect vehicle for delivering it all to our stomachs.
Then we moved on to the main part of the meal. The day before the meal I hunted down a 5 pound goat leg.
Then the morning of the meal I briefly browned the leg in a roasting pan on the stove, then set the leg aside while I sauteed some herbs and cloves of garlic in the pan. Then I deglazed the pan with some chicken broth and diluted raw apple cider vinegar. Finally I put the leg back in the pan, covered it with foil and put it into the oven to roast low and slow, basting it with the juices in the pan occasionally. After 3 1/2 hours in the oven I turned the heat down and removed the tin foil and let the leg roast for an additional 3 1/2 hours until the leg was a beautiful golden brown and the meat was practically falling off of the bones.
To finish off the drippings, I added a tablespoon of butter, which made an amazing rich sauce for the shredded goat meat. The meat was tender and moist. If you’ve never had goat meat, you are missing out! It’s incredibly flavorful and not “weird” tasting at all! If you want the recipe, you’ll have to go out and get a copy of one of my favorite cookbooks, Goat: Meat, Milk, Cheese, by Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough.
To go with the roasted goat meat I made one of my favorite Indian dishes—palak paneer, a rich spinach curry dotted with cubes of paneer, a soft crumbly unaged cheese. I used my friend Prerna’s recipe (it’s incredible, as is all of her creations on her beautiful blog, Indian Simmer). My goaty twist was to make my own paneer using goat milk instead of the normal cows milk. The times needed to curdle the milk to make the curds and then press the curds to make the cheese are longer than needed for the normal cows milk paneer, but Bruce and Mark provide fabulous tips on making it work in their book. (See, yet another reason you should own a copy!) I served the palak paneer with fragrant basmati rice. Swoon. Enough said.
I served a goat yogurt raita as a side to the main dishes. I mixed chopped cucumber, onion, fresh squeezed lemon juice, and spices into goat yogurt. It made the perfect cooling compliment to the heavier main dishes.
For dessert, I served fresh apricot halves filled with a delicate goat cheese mousse, a recipe I developed in advance with this feast in mind. I predicted that my dad would love these, and I wasn’t mistaken. He got the dreamy look on his face that I had been hoping for!
Finally, because one dessert just isn’t enough for a special meal, we had chocolate goat milk truffles rolled in cocoa powder. I used a recipe from Cypress Grove’s website, but instead of using plain creamy goat cheese, I used Cypress Grove Purple Haze, a soft creamy goat cheese that has lavender and fennel pollen mixed into it. The lavender and fennel pollen added wonderful fragrant notes to the dark chocolate, making these truffles even more special.
The meal was the perfect culmination to my #Goaterie experience. Not only did I enjoy watching my fell0w bloggers explore the world of goat meat, milk, and cheese, but I myself learned a lot from the experience. Barb (Creative Culinary) and I were tickled with how many people jumped into the experience. If you’re curious to know who won some amazing prizes, check out the list of winners. If you want to see everyone’s amazing creations, or have some of your own to share, check out Barb’s Goaterie page!