Christmas is just around the corner and this is the right opportunity to introduce how we celebrate Christmas in Guadeloupe Archipelago.
From the “Chanté nwel”, the Creole black pudding, the pineapple Christmas ham, coconut specialities, meat, seafood, chicken pie pastries to good punch such as the shrubb or the coconut one, the festive period of Christmas is undoubtedly one of the most famous in Guadeloupe Archipelago. You can clearly see how joyful and excited people are as they are open their houses for anyone who wants to eat or drink Christmas dishes.
“Chanté Nwel” is a tradition from the XVII century. Basically people are meeting to sing together, it can be outside in any specific site or inside in big meeting rooms. The “cantique” is the book where you can find every song they will sing during the night if you have not memorised them yet. Although most of the songs are French, there is a personal creole touch or version for each of them. “Chante nwel” start in November until the Christmas day. “Nwel Kakado” which takes place in Vieux-Habitants Township is a traditional fair where you will discover all details about a proper Christmas in Guadeloupe Archipelago such as the nativity scene and specific songs called “Bèlè”.
Christmas markets are quite common in Guadeloupe as well. It is the right time to buy ready-made traditional foods and drinks.
Like everywhere around the world, Christmas Eve and Christmas day are family and friends gathering to share a tasty and hearty meal. In Guadeloupe Archipelago, you will certainly start with an appetizer composed of the famous coconut punch or shrubb and a piece of pineapple ham. People from Guadeloupe Archipelago love spicy foods. That is why you will always find a hot chilli jar on the table. Then, the starter will come with meat, fish or seafood pie pastries, some saltfish fritters, some spicy Creole black pudding and a mixed salad. The traditional main is a pork stew with pigeon pea, yam or/and white rice. Finally the dessert is a Yule log or a coconut flan. Obviously, the bottle of rum, slices of limes and sugar cane sugar or syrup will be on the table to make as much as “ti punch” as wanted while eating.
Guadeloupe Archipelago is definitely a warm place to spend Christmas; it is worthwhile to try it at least once during your lifetime. You won’t be disappointed, especially if you are a food lover.