Gummekaka (Christmas cake)

In Torestorp and Älekulla in Västergötland, a round cake is baked on the day before Christmas Eve that is often shaped like a wreath – this is known as a “gummekaka”.

Picture collage of two decorated cakes.

Category: Food traditions, Social practises

Geographical location: Torestorp and Älekulla i Marks kommun, Västergötland

The cake is then given to a godchild on the day before Christmas Eve along with gifts or sweets. It is also common for the godparents to receive a gift in return and for them to be invited to dinner when the gifts are exchanged. This tradition originates in the custom of giving children presents around Christmas time in their first year of life and was a symbol of care. The tradition used to be more widespread and it is documented in Skåne and Blekinge in southern Sweden. In Västergötland, the tradition is still alive and very much appreciated.