¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
¼ cup maraschino cherry juice
6 cups confectionary sugar
For the Cake:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Generously grease and flour two 9-inch round layer cake pans (line bottoms with parchment, if desired) and set aside.
Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl; set aside.
Cream butter, shortening, and sugar in a large bowl until fluffy, about five minutes.
Measure out the milk, almond extract, and cherry juice into one liquid measuring cup together. Beginning and ending with the dry ingredients, alternately add the wet and dry to the creamed mixture. Beat well after each addition. Fold in the cherries.
Stiffly beat egg whites in a separate bowl. Fold in ? of egg whites to batter to lighten it. Fold in the remaining egg whites until mixture is well combined.
Divide the batter between pans and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until springy to touch.
Cool cakes in pans on wire racks for about 10 minutes. Using a thin knife, loosen carefully around edges and turn out onto the racks. Cool to room temperature.