1) Preheat the oven to 425°F. Lightly grease a baking sheet, or line with parchment.
2) Whisk together the dry ingredients.
3) Work the butter into the dry ingredients to make an unevenly crumbly mixture.
4) Stir the vanilla extract (and lemon oil, if you're using it) into the milk, then stir into the dry ingredients until everything is moistened.
5) Turn the soft dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and fold it over once or twice.
6) Pat it into a 1"-thick circle, about 7 1/2" in diameter; and use a 2" biscuit cutter to cut out about 14 circles, re-rolling the dough scraps if necessary.
7) Place the shortcakes onto the prepared baking sheet, and brush the tops with milk or melted butter. Sprinkle with coarse white sparkling sugar, if desired.
8) Bake the biscuits for 14 to 16 minutes, until they're golden brown. Remove from the oven, and cool on a rack. Or serve warm.
9) Serve with sugared berries or sliced peaches and whipped cream.
Yield: 14 shortcakes.