1 cup (2 sticks/8 oz./226g) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 3/4 cups cake flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon almond extract
1/3 cup cherry preserves
1/4 cup sliced almonds, (optional)
Confectioners' sugar, for dusting
Place oven rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F/160 degrees C. Butter a 10-inch round cake pan or springform pan.
With an electric mixer beat the butter until creamy. Gradually beat in the sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla extract.
Sift the cake flour, salt, and baking powder together and use a rubber spatula to fold the dry ingredients into this butter mixture until a soft dough forms and no white streaks of flour remain. Spread half the batter evenly in the bottom of the prepared pan. Stir the almond extract into the cherry preserves. Spoon the cherry preserves over the batter, spreading it within 2 inches of the border. Drop the remaining batter by large spoonfuls or pipe it with a plain tip over the preserves. Spread the batter carefully over the preserves to the edge of the pan. Sprinkle with sliced almonds, if desired. Bake in preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out with a few moist crumbs clinging to it. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 1 hour. Invert the cake and dust with confectioners' sugar.
Makes 10 servings.
Photograph taken by Diana Baker Woodall ©2001
Date: December 14, 2001