As a Vancouver based catering company, we get various requests for ethnic influenced foods for weddings, events and Christmas parties.
From majestic coast to coast Canada, is a mix of cuisines and traditions from all over the world. Our Christmas tables are heavily inspired by Europe, France, the U.K., and the U.S. We are a melting pot of traditions, and thus recipes which include a lot of true Canadian gems. These are but a few long standing holiday dishes we choose to celebrate a festive, fun Christmas with a Canadian twist.
Although Alberta raises it’s share of free range turkeys, Albertan Prime Rib dinner is still the holiday choice in this province. Nothing says Christmas like a traditional triple AAA roast beef dinner with gravy, roasted potato’s, and vegetables. From classic roast beef to more modern renditions like: rosemary & garlic crusted, or mustard and herbs or balsamic and Italian wine no matter how you prepare and slice it is sure to be a crowd pleaser.
In 1953 Edith Adams cookbook claimed the origin of the Nanaimo Bar. A copy is on view at the museum in Nanaimo, British Colombia on Vancouver Island. This dessert bar requires no baking and consists of three layers: a wafer for a coconut cream base, a custard flavoured butter layer and a top layer of chocolate ganache.
Roast Turkey dinner is the popular Canadian favourite!
So let’s talk turkey. Manitoba is one of the leading producers of turkey farms in Canada. The slow roasting tradition of turkey during the Christmas holidays is one that is the pride of generations of Canadian farmers and households.
Brown Bread with Baked Beans & Dulse
Homemade baked beans and steamed molasses brown bread with dulse (an edible seaweed) are local favourites. The molasses baked bread, which uses 3 types of flours; all purpose, rye & cornmeal, is studded with raisins and sweet spices. The bread is steamed in a can and cooked stovetop or oven. The buttermilk and molasses make this dense, moist bread hearty with a portion of beans topped with salty dulse for a holiday meal with friends & family. This is a great vegetation option for those in your clan that do without meat.
Newfoundland and Labrador
Atlantic salmon is an alternative to turkey dinner in this east coast region. Baked salmon recipes vary from table to table. One of the classics is a Salmon Fillets en Pappillote; lemon, olive oil, fresh thyme, sea salt & pepper. They are individually wrapped in parchment paper and served up as little gifts for your family to open.
Gravlax recipes are another fantastic way to serve salmon.
This Scandinavian influenced recipe preserves it in sea salt, lemon, dill and maple syrup brine. This is a wonderful Christmas appetizer to serve with your Christmas cocktails.
Hot mulled apple cider is made with sweet apples. It is a non-alcoholic beverage served at Christmas time. Cinnamon sticks and star anise can be combined to the beverage adding a warm spicy aroma and taste.
Barrie Ontario Claims to be the home of the original butter tart. These small sweet pastries are a quintessential Canadian dessert. The filling consists of butter sugar cereal up an egg baked in a pastry until it is semi solid with the crunchy top.
Prince Edward Island
PEI, with its rich, red soil produces bumper crops of Canadian potatoes. Mashed potatoes are a Christmas favourite. Yukon golds or russet potatoes make the best mashed potatoes.
By adding roasted garlic to the creamy mixture you create your own signature making a classic dish sublime.
Tourtiere is a Canadian meat pie dish. It origins are from the province of Quebec. It is usually made with minced pork, veal, beef and potatoes.
I add a little bit of dried fruit (prunes and/or dates) dried lavender to enhance the savoury flavours.
Pirogi are filled dumplings, which are of central European origin. Settlers from the Ukraine brought this recipe to our Canadian prairies and Manitoba where they settled. These delicious little pockets of dough filled with creamy potato and cheddar Iris favourite in our cold climate hockey season and regions.
Northwest Territories &
The capital of Nunavut is Iqaluit, which previous to 1999 was known as Frobisher Bay, located S.E of Baffin Island. The remote and isolated area accounts for a traditional diet that is loaded with raw arctic char, seal meat, and muktuk. Muktuk, is whale skin and blubber which is dipped into a salty soy type sauce and usually eaten raw.
Moose meat & Bison
Wild game is a staple of the Yukon diet. Locally grown produce includes morel mushrooms, beetroots, carrots, potatoes and berries included in recipes, are fundamentally core ingredients for this region. Meats are slow roasted, barbequed and smoked as a means of preservation, which strongly influence the native Inuit diet.
If you are lucky enough to have traveled and tasted Canadian Christmas cuisine, you realize how varied these delicious, classic traditions are. We are so fortunate to have the bounty this country produces from its land and seas but also the immense riches that our culturally diverse country offers.
Canada is quite literally a country whose cuisine caters to many tastes and cultures.
We wish you a very Merry Christmas, happy holidays and best wishes for a wonderful 2019!