A light, moist cake topped with a full jar of Amarena cherries and a sweet, crunchy topping
I didn’t discover cherries until I was about 30. For whatever reason, even though mum and dad would buy them every year at Christmas time, I didn’t want to know about them. I’d decided I didn’t like them and I don’t think I had actually ever tasted one. I wasn’t a huge fan of stone fruits so that was probably why. The sticky gooey stone that you get left with at the end would always gross me out. Haha. Then, one day, I tasted a fresh cherry. I really liked it. I still don’t buy them regularly but I admit they are pretty yummy and I always think about getting some when I see how pretty they look on the stand.
Anyway, one day, I’m doing my food shopping and, being that I’m totally obsessed with food and always looking for some new ingredient to play with, I came across a cute little jar of cherries in the supermarket that I hadn’t heard of before – Amarena cherries – in syrup. Naturally, I bought some. Well come on, anything in syrup has to be amazing, right? 🙂 Yup. I was intrigued to see what they tasted like (oh and that little thing called patience just isn’t my thing) so I only made it to the first set of traffic lights before opening the jar and tasting one. There was a moment of panic as it slipped and fell out of my fingers, but, with the skill of a ninja, I caught it with the other hand and crammed it in my mouth before it could escape again. Then a quick check to make sure no one in the cars around me saw a thing. Nope. Still cool 🙂 And yummmm! So sweet and so much flavour.
Ok, now what am I going to do with my little jar of sticky, cherry goodness? I was imagining a really posh cherry ripe until, while flicking through one of my cookbooks at home, I came across a recipe for crumble cake. Light bulb moment! Cherry Crumble Cake. And here it is. Delicate, moist cake, topped with a full jar of Amarena cherries, and a sweet, crunchy topping. You could certainly use fresh cherries instead or even the maraschino cherries would work in this recipe.
With a dollop of cream this can be a delicate afternoon tea cake. Or add some icecream or custard to make it a decadent dessert.
Oh and you don’t need to throw that syrup away. Try it drizzled over pancakes or ice cream. Or try making a cherry tiramisu or use it to flavour buttercream frosting.
On that note, go forth and bake 🙂
- 100g unsalted butter, softened
- 100g caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 125g self raising flour
- 2 Tbsp milk**
- Zest of ½ lemon
- 1 jar of amarena cherries drained
- 1/3 cup plain flour
- ½ cup almond meal
- 2 Tbsp caster sugar**
- 50g chilled butter, chopped
- 1 egg yolk, lightly beaten
- Cream, ice cream or custard to serve
- Preheat the oven to 170C. Grease and line a spring form cake tin.
- For the crumble place all ingredients except for the egg yolk into a bowl and use your fingertips to rub it together until the mixture looks like bread crumbs. Add the yolk and mix through with a fork. Refrigerate until required.
- For the cake, beat together the butter and sugar until pale and creamy. Add the egg and vanilla and continue to beat until well combined. Add the flour, lemon zest and milk and mix until just combined. Make sure not to overmix. Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking tin and smooth the top.
- Drain the cherries and chop roughly. Scatter them over the top of the cake batter. Then scatter over the crumble mix. Bake for 45 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Cool in the tin and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Lovely with a dollop of cream or icecream or, my favourite, served warm with some custard. Yum!
- ** I use an Australian standard 20ml tablespoon