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22 amaretti cookies (Italian almond cookies), coarsely chopped
2 cups chopped almonds
1 cup oatmeal
1/3 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. ground allspice
3 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/3 cup sugar
3 tbsp. amaretto liqueur
3 tbsp. cornstarch
2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. minced lemon zest
6 cups pitted sweet cherries (from about 3 pounds)
Vanilla ice cream (optional)
Combine the first seven ingredients in medium bowl. Knead in butter with fingers, making sure that the butter is in tiny pieces and coats the cookie mixture. Set aside.
For filling: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 2-quart soufflé dish. Combine all ingredients except cherries in heavy large saucepan. Whisk over low heat until cornstarch dissolves and mixture begins to simmer, about 3 minutes. Add cherries and stir to coat with sauce. Cook 2 minutes longer. Pour cherry mixture into prepared dish. Cool slightly. Spoon topping over cherries. Place dish on baking sheet. Bake crisp until topping is golden brown and filling bubbles, covering with foil if necessary to keep topping from browning too much, about 45 minutes. Cool slightly. Top individual pieces with vanilla ice cream, if desired.
Serves 6 to 8.