This is most definitely a once a year treat for me, hence the name. Years ago, I had a lovely neighbor, and because of her love of Maraschino cherries, this was always served with tea.  I looked at her old dog eared recipe, and thought, I have not had this in many years, lets give it a try.  I was pleasantly surprised.  This loaf had a really nice, moist texture.  I cut back the sugar amount, the original recipe calls for 3/4 of a cup, I used 2/3 of a cup.  It was the perfect amount of sweetness, and rather than halve the cherries, I chopped them smaller.
1 cup roughly chopped Maraschino cherries (from Jarred Maraschino Cherries)
2 Tblsp. of the juice - reserved
3 Tblsp. water
1/2 cup butter
2/3 cup Organic Golden Cane Sugar
1 tsp. Pure Almond Extract
2 large eggs
1/3 cup Brown Rice Flour
3/4 cup Sweet Rice Flour
2/3 cup Tapioca Starch
1/4 cup Potato Starch
1 tsp. Xanthan Gum
1 tsp. Baking Powder
1/4 tsp. Baking Soda
pinch of salt
In a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment, cream the butter on medium speed, about 2 minutes.  Slowly add in the sugar, continuing to beat for 2 more minutes, and scraping down the sides as necessary.  Add in the Almond extract, and the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, until well incorporated.
Mix up the flours, Xanthan, Baking Powder, Baking Soda and salt in a bowl, whisking well to combine.  To the reserved cherry juice add 3 Tblsp. of water.
Mixing by hand, add the dry ingredients, alternating with the cherry water, mixing just to combine, and then fold in the chopped cherries.
The batter will be quite thick.  Transfer the batter to a greased loaf pan, spreading out evenly.
Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 55 - 60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.  When baked, place the dish on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then turn out of the pan, to cool on the wire rack.  Slice when completely cooled.

Ina Gawne
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December 17, 2010