For the Almond Layer Cake: – 2 1⁄4 cups cake flour – 1 1⁄2 teaspoons baking powder – 1 teaspoon kosher salt – 2 cups granulated sugar – 6 eggs, room temperature – 2 1⁄4 teaspoons vanilla extract – 1 1⁄4 teaspoons almond extract – 1 1⁄4 cups unsalted butter, melted and hot

For the Cherry Whipped Cream: – 2 cups heavy or whipping cream – 3 ounces maraschino cherry juice – 1 teaspoon vanilla extract – 1 cup powdered sugar – Maraschino cherries for topping, optional

– Preheat the oven to 350ºF & line two 8-inch round cake pans with parchment paper,  then grease parchment with softened butter and coat with flour. Set aside. – In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. – To the bowl of a food processor, add the sugar, eggs, vanilla, and almond extract, processing until combined, about 10 seconds. – With the food processor running, add melted butter in a steady stream until incorporated. – Transfer this sugar mixture to a large bowl. – Sift flour mixture over sugar mixture in 3 additions, whisking to combine after each addition until few streaks of flour remain. – Continue to gently whisk the batter until almost no lumps remain. – Divide cake batter evenly among the prepared cake pans. – Bake until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean, 24 to 28 minutes, rotating pans halfway through baking. – Let cakes cool in pans on a wire rack for 10 minutes. – Run a paring knife around the edges of the pans to loosen, if needed. – Remove cakes from pans, discarding the parchment paper, and let cool completely on rack, about 2 hours.

– While the cakes cool, prepare the cherry whipped cream. – Place the mixer bowl and whisk attachment in the freezer for 10 minutes. – Once the bowl and whisk are cold, add to the bowl the heavy cream, cherry juice, vanilla extract, and powdered sugar. – Begin whisking on low speed until the sugar has been incorporated, about 30-60 seconds then gradually increase speed to high, whisking until stiff peaks form. The whipped cream should hold its shape when the whisk attachment is lifted out of the bowl. – Once cakes have cooled, top one layer with an even layer of whipped cream then place the second layer on top and add remaining whipped cream. – Garnish with additional maraschino cherries, if desired.