2 pounds fresh cherries, pitted, or two 1-pound bags frozen sweet cherries, thawed, drained
2 pounds fresh apricots, halved, pitted
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch (optional)
1-2 t lemon juice
1 t vanilla or almond extract
2 T Tuaca or other liquer (optional)
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 1/4 cup chilled buttermilk
zest of one lemon
preheat oven to 400°F. toss all ingredients in large bowl to blend. add cornstarch if you prefer a thicker sauce--we like to leave it out because the juice is fabulous. transfer to a lightly buttered 13x9x2" glass baking dish. bake until filling is hot and begins to bubble at edges, about 35 minutes. reduce oven temperature to 375°F.
while fruit is baking, prepare topping: whisk flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in another large bowl to blend. add butter; rub in with fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal. slowly add buttermilk, a quarter cup at a time, tossing with fork until dough comes together. drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls over hot filling to cover. sprinkle with remaining 1 tablespoon sugar. put cobbler back in the oven until topping is golden and tester inserted into center of topping comes out clean, about 40 minutes. cool 15 minutes. serve cobbler warm with whipped cream or ice cream. also excellent the next day for breakfast.