mom and son cooking together

6 Holiday Recipes from Coast Hotels’ Kitchens

6 Holiday Recipes from Coast Hotels’ Kitchens

The holiday season is often referred to as “the most wonderful time of the year,” with twinkling lights illuminating the streets and friends and neighbours wrapped up in the infectious feelings of warmth and good holiday cheer.

There’s also another reason many of us love the holidays, and it has everything to do with the smells of the kitchen. There’s just something about family recipes both time-tested and traditional, and the comforting sight as our loved ones come together to bake some wonderful seasonal treats.

We know the holidays simply wouldn’t be the same without the cherished and treasured memories families make in the kitchen. In the spirit of the season, chefs from our Coast Hotels’ kitchens have opened their books and catalogues to share recipes passed down through the generations.

1. Pineapple Ham from Coast West Edmonton Hotel & Conference Centre

sliced ham on a cutting board

If you’ve never grown up with the grand tradition of making a holiday ham, you’re in for a treat with this festive roast from our chef at the Coast West Edmonton Hotel & Conference Centre.

Imbued with the classic flavor combo of citrus and brown sugar, this simple recipe produces tender, juicy pieces of ham that gently fold over caramelized edges when sliced.

For our chef, this slab of pork covered in a pattern of fruit and lacquered with glaze always serves as the centerpiece in the middle of the table at Christmas. It’s easy to prepare – no trussing or stuffing involved.

Pineapple Ham

2 kg boneless ham

1 litre pineapple juice

1 cup brown sugar

Garnish cloves

Pineapple rings



● In a stockpot, submerge the ham into the pineapple juice and let it boil.
● Add the brown sugar and let it simmer on low heat.
● Reduce the liquid into half while turning the ham to the other side.
● Remove the ham from the liquid and place in a roasting pan.
● In a small pot, simmer the remaining liquid until caramelized. Set aside.
● Put the clove and pineapples on top of the ham.
● Bake the ham at 350ºF for 20 mins, basting every 5 minutes with the liquid.
● Drizzle the remaining liquid over the ham and garnish with cherry on top.

The Edmonton area comes to life during the holiday season with numerous tours and activities. At the Coast West Edmonton Hotel & Conference Centre, located just steps from one of North America’s largest shopping destinations, you’ll get a $25 West Edmonton Mall gift card with your stay, plus a free starter or dessert from Choices Kitchen & Bar, serving up the comfort foods of the season.

2. Butternut Squash & Pumpkin Soup from Coast Canmore Hotel and Conference Centre

pumpkin soup in a bowl

The fertile soils of Alberta produce bountiful crops, providing our chefs with healthy garden fare deep into the winter months. Above all, most squashes have a sweet and nutty flavor perfect for fabulous and hearty meals.

If you’re one to eat with the seasons, you’ll find no better choice for a chilly evening than this smooth and velvety soup, delicately seasoned with cinnamon and allspice.

Butternut Squash & Pumpkin Soup (dairy-free / gluten-free)

1 medium butternut squash (peeled and seeded, cut into 1” cubes)

1 can pure pumpkin (E.D. Smith)

4 sprigs fresh thyme or 1.5 tsp. dried thyme

2 tsp. cinnamon

5 tsp. allspice

5 L veg stock


● In a 10 L pot combine the squash, thyme and half the vegetable stock. Simmer until the squash is tender.
● Add the pumpkin, spices, and rest of the vegetable stock and bring to a simmer for 30 mins.
● Cool at room temperature until you can blend with an immersion blender, food processor or Vitamix.
● Return to low heat for 20 minutes and adjust the seasoning, adding salt and pepper to taste.

*Chef’s note: Those wanting a silkier mouth feel who are okay with dairy can add 1 cup of 35% whipping cream. Re-check the seasoning after adding.

Hungry yet? Wonder no more about the wonders of winter squash. This soup has been a featured holiday recipe at the Coast Canmore Hotel and Conference Centre three years running and can be yours to enjoy after a snow-packed day on the majestic mountains of Alberta. Our Executive Chef can’t wait to welcome you!

3. Dione’s Grandma’s Tourtière from Prestons Restaurant + Lounge at Coast Edmonton Plaza Hotel by APA

meat pie

Food and nostalgia go hand-in-hand for anyone whose holiday memories extend to grandma’s house. Sometimes, those family cooking traditions practically come crawling out of the cupboards and cookbooks, just waiting to be shared with others.

Such is the case for the tourtière, a French-Canadian meat pie said to have originated in the province of Quebec as early as 1600. Most recipes for tourtière include ground pork and other ground meats, and this recipe sticks with tradition. Our chef enjoys it as an appetizer on Christmas Eve served with mustard or beet pickles.

Dione’s Grandma’s Tourtière

*Yield: 1, 11” pie. For 9” pie decrease filling by 1/3.

1 lb ground pork

½ lb ground chicken

2 medium-sized peeled Yukon gold potatoes

3 cloves minced garlic

½ diced medium-sized white onion

1 tbsp. poultry seasoning

Salt & pepper to taste

1 egg (for glazing)

Prepared pie dough for the top and bottom* make your favourite recipe or purchase*


● Preheat oven to 375ºF
● Dice your peeled potatoes and boil them until fork tender.
● In a large saucepan brown your ground meats.
● Finely dice onions and garlic. When ground meat finishes browning, drain a bit of the fat from the pan and add onions and garlic. Continue to cook until veggies are translucent.
● Mash or rice the potatoes.
● Transfer cooked meat, veggies, and mashed potatoes to a large bowl to season and mix. Taste the filling and adjust as necessary.
● Fill the bottom pie crust until capacity by heaping in the middle. Smooth the top and moisten the bare edge around the crust.
● Drape the top pastry over the filled bottom, then crimp the top pastry to the bottom and trim excess. Cut holes into the top pastry to ventilate the crust in whatever design you’d like. Brush with egg wash.
● Bake for 15 to 25 minutes, or until pastry is browned nicely.

Let us know what holiday foods run deep with tradition and make your family wax nostalgic.  Join us at Coast Edmonton Plaza Hotel by APA and unwrap a memorable holiday experience while making brand new memories this season.

4. Tipsy Sweet Yams from The Benson, a Coast Hotel

sliced yams

The holidays aren’t just special because of the way food is made and prepared, but because of the way it’s shared and enjoyed. Moreso, it’s always nice to hear, “May I have this recipe?”

As a host, it makes you feel good when you know your work is appreciated.  That’s the way our chef feels about this next recipe, passed along more than 40 years ago by a mentor during the holiday season.

Tipsy Sweet Yams

The Sauce

2 cups brown sugar

Juice of 1 large orange  (Navels have no seeds) or 5 Tbsp. orange juice

8 tbsp. any kind of bourbon or whiskey

12 drops of bitters (I use Angostura)

2 tbsp. melted butter (salted or non-salted is fine)

2 pinches salt

In any container, add all the above ingredients and blend

The Yams

1 15 oz can of yams (fully drained)


● Place the yams In a shallow dish that is oven safe; glass or ceramic is best, but metal is fine too.
● Pour the sauce over the yams, using all of it.
● Cover the yams with parchment or wax paper and then cover the dish securely with tin foil. (the paper will prevent the acidity of the ingredients from deteriorating the foil).
● Bake at 325º F for approximately 30 minutes.
● Feel free to use any kind of traditional toppings such as mini-marshmallows.

*Chef’s Tip: Don’t bake and instead prepare the day before and hold in the refrigerator. Bake the day of the event (if you do this, add 10 minutes to the cooking time).

There’s no place like home for the holidays — unless you can treat yourself to The Benson, a Coast Hotel located in Portland, Oregon. This historic hotel will elevate your Christmas mood with its festive decor and timeless beauty.  Early December also brings the 48th Annual Gingerbread Unveiling, a popular event welcoming visitors of all ages.

5. Chef Justin’s Mushroom Soup from Coast Coal Harbour Hotel

mushroom soup

From the oddly shaped to the incredibly delicious, the versatility of mushrooms means they can be used in recipes from sautes to stews. Chef Justin from our Coast Coal Harbour Hotel in Vancouver has been making a rendition of this soup over many years, often serving it with honey-glazed buttermilk biscuits.

Mushroom Soup

*Yields 1.4 L

Salted butter – 120 g

Yellow onions, diced – 230 g (1 onion)

Minced garlic – 15 g (3 cloves)

Brandy – 45 mL

Cremini mushrooms – 200 g

Shitake mushrooms – 100 g

Portabella mushrooms – 100 g

Oyster mushrooms – 50 g

Wild mushrooms – 50 g

Flour – 75 g

Vegetable stock – 1.2 L

Thyme – 2 sprigs

Rosemary – 1/4 sprig

Bay leaves – 2 large

Heavy cream – 250 mL

Kosher salt – 11 g

White pepper – to taste


● Peel the Portabellas, remove the gills and discard. Slice the stems and caps.
● Slice all remaining mushrooms, keeping bite-sized pieces in mind.
● Slice the Creminis 4-5 mm thick.
● In a stock pot, cook the onions on medium-low heat until translucent.
● Add the garlic and cook until fragrant.
● Add the brandy and flambe. Be careful!
● Add all mushrooms, cooking them down until the liquid is released.
● Reduce the liquid by half.
● Add butter, allowing it to melt. Next, stir in flour to create an aromatic roux.
● Once the flour is incorporated, begin to add the vegetable stock 200 ML at a time.
● Stirring with a spoon, ensure the mixture is smooth before adding more liquid. As the soup becomes thinner and is lump-free besides mushrooms, you can increase the volume of liquid as you go.
● Add the herb sprigs, bay leaves, and heavy cream. Bring the soup to a boil.
● Once the soup is boiling, reduce to a simmer and cook out the flour. This should take 20-30 minutes on a low simmer.
● Stir occasionally and add seasonings.

Foraging for mushrooms might not top your list of things to do in Stanley Park, but you never know what you’ll get up to near the Coast Coal Harbour Vancouver Hotel by APA. Our location offers convenient access to the heart of the city, not to mention the perfect spot to wine and dine on your holiday getaway.

6. Marshmallow Toffee Balls from Prestons Restaurant + Lounge at the Coast Chilliwack Hotel by APA

toffee balls

No holiday is complete without a marvelous, yet messy dessert on the table. This one is a treat for the entire family, packing a lot of Christmas memories into one sweet and sticky package.

Our chef once made a huge mess of grandma’s kitchen growing up, then placed these delectable little treats outside in the cold Alberta air to freeze. Enjoy them that way, or leave them at room temperature.

Marshmallow Toffee Balls

Makintosh toffee bars- 3 each

Condensed milk – 1/2 cup

Unsalted butter – 1/2 cup

Large marshmallows – 24 each

Walnuts (can substitute Rice Krispies) – 4 cups


● Heat the toffee bars, condensed milk, and butter on low heat until melted.
● Dip the marshmallows into the toffee mixture.
● Roll in the walnuts.
● They can be kept at room temperature or frozen.

The spirit of the holidays is alive and well at the newly renovated Coast Chilliwack Hotel by APA. Book now to discover a holiday season tailored to your taste here in beautiful British Columbia.