Tiny Cherry Almond Teacakes

My eyes dart back and forth between the oven and the clock. I need to leave the house. Soon! Whyyyyyy do I do this to myself? I have a one hour break between work and break dance session. Time to chill, get ready, and unwind. But what do I do? Make teacakes. Genius!

It's not my fault someone bought cherries. They were sitting on the counter, staring at me as I nibbled on some cereal. Alas, they would go to waste if I didn't use them. I had just the recipe in mind and it would give my new cookbook a chance to redeem itself.

These teacakes are fantastic. The texture is delightful and unique! They're not like mini cupcakes or muffins. They're dense but not heavy; moist but thick. The center holds a warmed cherry oozing with sweet natural flavor. You can remove the cherry stem if you want, but I think it makes them look like little bombs from Mario Kart. The boys at session loved them. Plus, the are super simple and quick.

The directions say use mini-muffins pans to yield 30. I have mini cupcake tins, which I hope are the same thing. These are the perfect snack and breakfast nibble.

1 1/4 sticks (10 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup finely ground unblanched almonds or almond mead
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon coarse salt
5 large egg whites
4 teaspoons kirsch (cherry brandy)or substitute with
30 sweet (Bing) cherries

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease tins (butter + flour, spray, etc).

Melt butter in small skillet over medium-high heat. When it begins to sputter, reduce heat to medium. Cook, swirling skillet occasionally, until butter has lightly browned and has a slight nutty smell. Skim foam from top, and remove skillet from heat.

Whisk together flour, ground almonds, sugar, and salt in a bowl. Add egg whites, and whisk until smooth. Stir in kirsch/juice. Pour in butter, leaving any dark-brown sediment in skillet, and whisk to combine. Let stand for 20 minutes.

Spoon 1 tablespoon batter into each buttered cup, filling about halfway. Push a cherry into each, keeping stem end up. With a small spoon, smooth batter over cherries to cover.

Bake until a toothpick comes out clean and cakes are golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes. Run a knife around edges to loosen, and unmold.

Cakes can be stored in airtight containers at room temperature overnight.