1. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Lightly grease a 9" round cake pan that's at least 2" deep. If your 9" round pan isn't at least 2" deep, use an 8" square pan (at least 2" deep).

  2. Pit the cherries, and put them into the pan; they should form a single layer that pretty much covers the bottom of the pan.

  3. In a blender or food processor, blend the remaining ingredients till smooth and frothy. If you're using a mixer, beat the liquid ingredients, then add the sugar and flour, quickly whisking to combine.

  4. Pour the batter over the cherries in the pan.

  5. Bake the clafouti on a lower-middle rack of your oven for 20 minutes.

  6. Reduce the oven heat to 350°F, and bake for an additional 20 minutes, or until the top is lightly browned and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out mostly clean.

  7. Remove from the oven, and wait 10 minutes before cutting and serving.

  8. Garnish with toasted almonds, if desired.

  9. Yield: 8 servings.