Kick Off Your Christmas Cooking with Some Reggae and Black Cake (vegan and gluten-free)

Hello lovelies!! Today was a super long (but fun!!) day of baking Christmas cookies with a friend from law school and chatting for hours with another good friend.  This time of the year always reminds of how much has God has blessed me through the love of others close to me and through the gift of His Son.

That said, alas, Christmas is upon us, and, like every year, I end up scrambling to cook something.

I’m letting my sorrel soak so I can make the drink tomorrow and you may want to do the same if you haven’t already.  In the meanwhile, I’ll re-post an oldie but a goodie — my vegan Christmas black “rum” cake.  It can easy be made gluten-free by substituting the flour with an equal amount of gluten free flour (Bob’s Red Mill baking blend or Angelique flour are my go-to favs).  Making black cake is a Jamaican Christmas tradition.  I’m soaking my fruits right now so I can make this later on today.

If only I had some “vegan” oxtail…

I’ll be back soon to post my “Ras Mas” Sorrel Recipe so stay tooned.

My earliest memories of Christmas in my household involve my father playing, from cassette or LP (remember those?), reggae covers of Christmas carols like “We Wish You an Irie Christmas” (Jacob Miller) or “Santa Clause, Do You Ever Come to the Ghetto?” (Carlene Davis).  When “Flash my Dreads” (Barrington Levy) came on, my sister and I would shake our heads from side to side, kind of like what Bob Marley used to do when he performed, with our braids swinging and splayed about.

While you wait for the sorrel to steep, I encourage you to play some reggae Christmas carols.  Trust me – they really set the atmosphere and get you into the Jamaican Christmas spirit vibes.

That said, I’ve decided to share my “Christmas reggae” YouTube playlist with all of you. There’s even some Toni Braxton on this, as well as the legendary John Holt and Yellowman. I LOVE the reggae cover of “Last Christmas.” Beres Hammond does what he does best and finishes the mix off with some smooth Christmas “chunes” (translation: tunes). This playlist is gold. Enjoy. 🙂

What are your Christmas traditions?  What do you eat around this time of the year?  Let me know in the comments!

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