Blackberry Almond Shortcake

Serves 6. Recipe is from Oregon Raspberry & Blackberry Commission.

21/4 cups all-purpose white flour

1?3 cup sugar plus 1 tbl. for sprinkling over biscuits

11/2 tsps. baking powder

1/4 tsp. baking soda

¼ tsp. salt

½ cup cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

2?3 cup buttermilk

1 beaten egg

1 tsp. almond extract

1 tbl. Grand Marnier

1 tbl. grated orange peel

1 tbl. whole milk

1/4 cup sliced almonds

Fruit filling (see recipe)

1. Preheat oven to 425 F. Coat a baking sheet lightly with nonstick cooking spray or line it with parchment paper. Set aside.

2. In a mixing bowl, stir together flour, 1?3 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Using a pastry cutter or your fingertips, cut butter into the flour mixture until crumbly.

3. In a small bowl, combine buttermilk, egg, almond extract, Grand Marnier and orange peel. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add the buttermilk mixture. With a fork, stir just until combined, adding additional buttermilk, as necessary, to form slightly sticky dough. Do not over mix.

4. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and sprinkle with a little flour. With your fingertips, gently pat dough to an even 1-inch thickness. Using a 3-inch round cookie cutter, cut out shortcakes and transfer them to the prepared baking sheet. Gather together scraps of dough, re-roll and cut remaining shortcakes. You should have 6 shortcakes. Brush milk over shortcakes. Scatter almonds over the tops and sprinkle lightly with the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar.

5. Bake shortcakes in preheated oven for 10-15 minutes or until golden. Transfer to a rack and let cool slightly. Using a serrated knife, split the shortcakes. Set bottoms on dessert plates, spoon on whipped cream and then the fruit mixture and crown with tops. Dollop on additional whipped cream if desired. Serve immediately.

Fruit filling

6 cups fresh or thawed frozen blackberries or Marionberries

1?3 cup sugar, preferably superfine

1 pint heavy cream

1 tbl. sugar

1 tsp. Grand Marnier

In a large bowl mix berries and 1?3 cup sugar; set aside for a few minutes. Whip cream with tablespoon of sugar and liqueur until soft peaks form.