I admit it, one of my guilty pleasures has always been maraschino cherries. I love them like crazy! I don’t even want to know what’s in them--it’ll ruin all the fun. They’re so pretty, all bright red and shiny--I love shiny! If we’re out for ice cream, and one of the kids doesn’t want the shiny cherry on top? Fork it over, kid--I’ll take care of that for you. I’ll even let it sink to the bottom sometimes, carefully eating around it, so I can enjoy it last.
Here’s another super simple recipe that you can serve for the holidays, or any time of year. Coincidentally, there are maraschino cherries in it--how lucky is that? My mom gave me the recipe quite a few years back, and I made it right away, because, you know--cherries? Yeah. My husband loves this, too! He’s not a a huge fan of desserts (I know!), but he adores this cake. By the way, I really do mean “super simple.” It’s all in one bowl--no mixing wet, mixing dry, blending and alternating. Easy!
Since it’s a pound cake, it improves every day. Like shortbread cookies. Now, I don’t really know why this is, and I’ve even looked into it--but can’t find a good reason for it. I’m assuming it’s something about the butter? Maybe the Butter Gods shine their golden buttery light down on buttery baked goods and demand they get better with each day that passes. Same thing with the Bacon Gods, I assume--except they demand that you eat all of the bacon in one damn sitting. But don’t quote me on that.
Anyway, you could make this in the next couple of days, and it would be perfect to serve for Christmas. In fact, I made mine on December 13th, and we’re still enjoying it this week, seven days later! Just keep it covered, on the counter. Unless your kitchen is super warm--mine’s on the cool side this time of year, so it’s ok. In warmer climates, store it in the fridge. The Butter Gods don’t approve of warm weather.
Cherry Nut Pound Cake
makes one 10 inch round cake
1/2 pound (2 sticks) of butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup plain Greek yogurt or sour cream
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp vanilla powder (totally optional)
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 cups chopped walnuts
1 cup chopped maraschino cherries, stems removed! (I used one 10 oz. jar, plus half of another to get the 1 cup chopped cherries)
Heat oven to 350F. Grease 10 inch round cake pan, set aside.
In a standing mixer, or large bowl with a hand mixer, cream the butter and sugar. Add the eggs and blend well.
Add the yogurt (or sour cream), vanilla, vanilla powder (if using), flour and baking powder. Blend just until moist.
Fold in the walnuts and cherries. Pour into prepared pan and bake for one hour--cake tester should come out clean.
Cool in the pan, on a cooling rack. Run a knife around the edge, and remove the cake: plate inverted on top of the cake pan, turn the cake out on to the plate, then flip it right side up on to your serving plate. Sprinkle with powdered sugar just before serving.