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Light, airy from-scratch maraschino cherry cakes with pink almond and cherry flavored buttercream. Top this cherry almond cake with simple little “flowers” made from almonds and cherries.
Our cherry recipes are some of our most popular recipes (cherry pie…cherry bread…cherry cookies). Ya’ll also love our cakes! Today we’re sharing our very special cherry almond cake. This cake is a beauty…and it’s so easy to decorate!
I have a couple of secrets to share with you today. The first secret is: I do not like making cakes under pressure, and I don’t like trying to make them look smooth and perfect. I am a perfectionist, but sometimes even perfectionists need a break!
The second secret?
I don’t have to make my cakes look perfect. I like when my cakes have frosting that is a bit “messy”. It adds character. This cake is ALL ABOUT how to make things less difficult and more cute. Who doesn’t love a super easy cake that people still “ooooh” and “aaaahh” over?
This is a from-scratch cake that we got from a Mennonite Community Cookbook that we love. My grandma got a copy of this cookbook when she got married. It has such amazing recipes that we had to order one for ourselves!
This recipe uses cake flour which makes it light and airy. You can use all-purpose flour but the cake won’t be as tender and won’t have as light of a crumb.
There are a few ways you can successfully make your cakes even-looking. For this cake, we used Wilton Bake Even Strips. I think they’re pretty amazing! The cakes magically turned out nice and flat.
If you don’t have some of these, you can also use a knife to cut any dome off the top of the baked cake. The downside? It takes off part of your cake, which means less cake for your masterpiece. But, that’s not so bad, because you can scarf down those scraps while they’re still a little warm.
If you don’t want to do these things, have no fear. Just strategically place your cakes on top of each other so that the thicker side goes with a thinner side. It’s that easy! And also, if you’re not happy with the evenness of your cake, you can add more icing to a ‘lacking side’.
You can never go wrong with too much icing!
We used our classic vanilla buttercream but added some maraschino cherry juice and almond extract in place of the vanilla. This icing is my FAVORITE frosting. Which is saying something, considering I am not a huge frosting fan.
I have a few frosting recipes that I love, but this one is my absolute favorite. Almond flavored with a little zing of cherry. It’s to die for! Melt-in-your-mouth amazing. This is the best buttercream.
**Pro Tip: Try to get the icing as smooth as possible, but don’t spend forever doing it. If you look closely, you’ll find that the top of our cherry almond cake is not perfectly smooth. That’s because I like the character that a little bit of messy frosting gives.**
What else gives a cake texture? The stripes on the side of the cake. They are SUPER easy to make, and you can use an ordinary kitchen tool. Use a knife, fork or spoon to make lines up the side of your frosting, dragging the utensil from the bottom to the top gently, in stripes.
There’s also smoother combs you can buy that create textured sides. Don’t press too hard so that it takes off too much frosting, but you want them to show up, too. The sides make it look pretty, and it covers up any mistakes I made when frosting the cherry almond cake.
Trust me, there were PLENTY of mistakes.
Don’t you just love, love, LOVE this almond cherry flower idea? I do. It’s very simple. All you do is dry some maraschino cherries on a napkin, place them strategically on the cake, and use almond slices to make flower petals around the cherries. I think it makes the cake look happy and exciting. Trust me, your guests will love this!!! We got the idea from The Perfect Palette. It has some seriously cute cake ideas.
And now for the flowers and stars, both of which are super easy. For the stars, I used a decorating bag and Wilton tip number 11 and piped a simple star. Put the tip close to the cake, squeeze, pull up. Easy-peasy.
All in all, this is a delicious, beautiful, sweet cherry almond cake for you to share with your friends (Or not…!) and enjoy this Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day…or any day for that matter!