Cherries are ripe for the pickin’ in the Land of Steady Habits–didjaknow? Belltown Hill Orchards kicked off pick-your-own cherries yesterday, thus I hopped in the katmobile, headed for Glastonbury and grabbed a pail.

I couldn’t leave Belltown without sampling their own cherry donuts…yes, made with freshly picked cherries right from their orchards!

Belltown's cherry donut--have a bite!

If you are anywhere near, please get there during cherry season to enjoy one yourself! Nowhere near me? That’s OK, we can bake this moist and delicious cherry almond cake instead.

Life's a katty bowl of cherries!

As anyone who knows me realizes, I pick to bake–ALWAYS. If you’re an almond lover–and I absolutely am–this cake has your name written all over it.

adapted from Williams Sonoma

1 cup sliced almonds (3/4 cup to grind, 1/4 cup to reserve for topping)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder (I used Paneangeli lievito vaniglinato per dolci)
1/4 teaspoon (heaping) salt
1 stick butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon turbinado sugar (for sprinkling on top)
3 eggs
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 cups fresh Bing cherries, pitted and halved

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 10-inch pie plate.

Using a mini food processor, add 3/4 cup almonds, flour, baking powder and salt. Process until almonds are finely ground. Set aside.

Use your stand mixer to cream butter with sugar. Add eggs one by one, blending each one till fully incorporated. Add almond extract.

With mixer on low, blend in flour mixture gradually–do not overmix.

Spread batter evenly into buttered pie plate. Place cherries atop batter. Mix together remaining 1/4 cup of almonds with 1 teaspoon turbinado sugar–sprinkle around edges of cake.

Like this--ready to bake!

Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of cake comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool on wire rack. Tastes fantastic warm. Dig in!

Ready to eat!

Want some?