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Preheat oven to 350°F. Melt butter or margarine in a 9-inch square baking pan in the oven (about 6 minutes). Remove from oven. Stir crushed crackers into melted butter or margarine; press the mixture firmly and evenly onto the bottom of the pan using a wooden spoon. Set aside.
Combine ricotta, egg, sugar, flour, orange zest and almond extract in a blender or food processor; blend or process until smooth. Carefully spread the cheese mixture over the crumb mixture. Combine the almonds (or hazelnuts), cherries and raisins; sprinkle over cheese layer. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until edges are puffed and golden. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 1 hour; cover and chill for 2 hours. Cut into bars.