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Cherry Cheese Squares

1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 teaspoon butter flavor
1/2 cup flaked coconut
1/2 cup finely chopped almonds
2 packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup white sugar
2 eggs, beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 or 2 cans (21 oz) cherry pie filling
1/2 to 2 teaspoons almond extract
1/2 cup slivered almonds

Combine flour and brown sugar; cut in shortening and butter flavor
until fine crumbs form. Stir in coconut and finely chopped almonds.
Reserve 1/2 cup mixture for topping. Press remaining mixture into
the bottom of a greased 9 x 13 inch baking pan. Bake at 350 deg
F for 12 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Meanwhile, for
filling, heat the cream cheese, white sugar, eggs and Vanilla
Extract in mixing bowl until smooth. Spread over the hot crust.
Bake an additional 15 minutes. Combine pie filling and almond
extract and spread on top of cream cheese filling. Combine reserved
crumbs and slivered almonds; sprinkle over cherries. Bake 15
minutes more. Cool on wire rack. Refrigerate until serving time.

The amount of cherries can be modified to your own personal taste.
For a more cheesecake flavor add only one can of cherries and 1/2
teaspoon Almond Extract. For a more cherry flavor add 2 cans of
cherries and the teaspoon of Almond Extract.


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