There is nothing quite like enjoying fruit when it's at its best - picked straight off the tree! This years cherry season is coming to a close, so make the most of it while you can. Celebrate the joys of cherries while they are at their most delicious with this cherry and almond cake.
I have called it a cake because of its classic sponge base, but in actual fact, this fresh cherry recipe could also be classed as a pudding. Fresh cherries release such a quantity of juice as they cook that the centre can stay a little squidgy, and the buttery, biscuity top will bring back fond memories of fruit crumble - but I can't see anything wrong with any of that.
There is one downside to any fresh cherry recipe - de-stoning, as your fingertips inevitable end up stained beetroot red. But at least removing the stones is easy enough when the cherries are perfectly ripe - just make a little cut with a sharp knife and pop them out.
For the Cake
- 125g butter, cubed
- 125g caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 75g self raising flour
- 100g ground almonds
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 1tsp cinnamon powder
- 300g fresh cherries - I used a mix of sweet black cherries and slightly tart rainier cherries, stones removed
For the Crumble Topping
- 25g plain flour
- 25g ground almonds
- 25g butter
- 50g of sliced almonds
Preheat the oven to 180°C/Gas mark 4. Grease or line a 20cm cake or loaf tin.
Create the crumble topping first, by rubbing together the butter, sugar and flour until it resembles breadcrumbs. Add most of the almonds, and set to one side
In a mixing bowl, combine the butter and the caster sugar and beat until pale and fluffy.
Add your eggs, one at a time, mixing in between to ensure the butter and sugar does not split.
Add the ground almonds, then sift in the flour and baking powder and fold in gently. The little bit of baking powder means that some of the cake batter rises and you get a pretty marbled effect on the top. The mixture may look a little dry, but remember that the cherries will excrete lots of liquid.
Tip the cake batter into your lined cake or loaf tin. Scatter the cherries in an even layer on top, then cover with handfuls of the crumble mixture.
Lastly, add the rest of the sliced almonds that you kept to one side, and bake for 50 minutes, checking after 40 to ensure the cake isn't burning.
I ate the first slice warm from the oven, and a little vanilla ice cream or classic custard wouldn't have gone amiss.
I hope you enjoy this one. But don't forget, this delicious fresh cherry recipe wouldn't have been possible without our star ingredient; fresh cherries from a cherry tree. We think our range of cherry tree gifts will bring a smile to almost anyone's face. Send one today, and demand that the recipient makes you a fresh cherry and almond cake as a thank you!