Cherry-Almond Cakes


Cherries and almonds are a felicitous pairing in these small, moist cakes, which are baked in individual ramekins. Serve warm from the oven for the best results. Delicious plain, even better with a scoop of vanilla or cherry ice cream!


1 tablespoon amaretto
1 1/4 cups sweet cherries (stemmed, pitted, and halved)
7 ounces marzipan
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter (softened)
2 teaspoons pure almond extract
2 large eggs
1/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt


Combine the amaretto and cherries in a small bowl and allow the fruit to macerate in the liqueur for 1 hour at room temperature.

Meanwhile, butter six 8-ounce ramekins and set aside. Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F.

Place the marzipan and butter in the bowl of a mixer and beat at high speed until smooth and fluffy. Beat in the almond extract, then add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Reduce the speed to low and add the flour and salt, mixing until just combined.

Divide the batter among the 6 prepared ramekins. Lightly press the cherries into the batter, discarding any amaretto that wasn't absorbed. Transfer the ramekins to the preheated oven and bake until the cakes are puffed, golden, and set in the middle, 20 to 25 minutes.

Transfer the cakes to a wire rack and cool for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.


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