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1. Butter a 3-quart rectangular baking dish with some of the butter; spread remaining butter on bread slices. Place bread slices in baking dish, overlapping as necessary to fit. Sprinkle with frozen cherries, half of the chocolate pieces, and the cinnamon. Set aside.
2. In a medium saucepan combine remaining chocolate pieces, 1 cup of the whipping cream, and the sugar; heat and stir just until chocolate is melted. Gradually stir in remaining cream. Beat eggs in a very large bowl; stir in melted chocolate mixture and almond extract. Slowly pour over bread in dish (dish will be very full). Cover and chill 2 hours or overnight.
3. Preheat oven to 325 degree F. Uncover bread pudding and place baking dish on a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake for 70 to 80 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer registers 160 degree F when inserted in the center. Cool on a wire rack at least 45 minutes. Serve warm. If desired, top with whipped cream and/or almonds. Makes 16 to 20 servings.