1. In a large bowl, with a flexible spatula, combine sugar, mace, almond extract, and orange peel. Add apricots and mix. Scrape mixture into a buttered shallow 1 1/2- to 2-quart casserole and spread level.
2. With lightly floured hands, tear off lumps (3- to 4-tablespoon size) of the patty cake crust and pat into cakes about 1/4 inch thick; lay them as shaped over fruit, covering fairly evenly (a few gaps are fine). When all the dough is in place, press down lightly to join portions.
3. Bake cobbler in a 375° regular or convection oven (if using a 1 1/2-qt. casserole, set on a large sheet of foil in case mixture boils over) until fruit is bubbling and crust is well browned, 50 to 60 minutes. Let stand at least 10 minutes or until cool. Scoop fruit and crust into bowls, adding more sugar to taste.
Patty-cake Crust. In a food processor or bowl, combine 1 cup all-purpose flour; 6 tablespoons butter cut into thin slices; 1/4 cup cream cheese (2 oz.), cut into small pieces; 1/2 teaspoon grated orange peel; and 1/4 teaspoon ground mace. Whirl or rub with your fingers until mixture forms fine crumbs. Add 1 large egg yolk and whirl or stir until dough holds together. Press into a ball.
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