We hit the streets in search of seasonal sweets in which to indulge before summer’s end. Our findings: four fabulous bakeries boasting tarts and cakes made with fruits and dairy sourced from Philadelphia farmlands. Bon appetit!
Plum Tart at Metropolitan Bakery
Metropolitan Bakery has been feeding Philadelphia, literally and metaphorically, for two decades: Not only does the bakery make tarts year-round using fruit from Fishtown farms, it also employs and trains recent parolees and mentors city youth. This season, Philadelphia-native and bakery owner James Barrett is making apple, pear, plum and quince tarts—with herb-infused dough, brown butter glaze and nuts for the late summer season.
Dessert du jour: Barrett’s rich and nutty plum tart is made with almond or pistachio flour and glazed with herbs and brown butter. Using top quality butter, eggs, cream and flour the tart is blind-baked, topped with sweet plums and baked once more to crispy confection. Available through summer. 4013 Walnut St., 215-222-1492
Fruit Strip at Swiss Haus Bakery
The Swiss Haus Bakery has been a confectionary staple in Philadelphia for nearly a century. Through closings and reopenings, head baker Donna Canzanese has prepped, powdered, dipped and glazed delicious pastries, cookies and cakes with an unflinching allegiance to fruits from Sue’s Produce Market and dairy products from PA’s own Wawa Dairy.
Dessert du jour: Canzanese’s fruit strip is a light and fluffy almond cake made moist by Wawa Dairy butter. The cake is drenched in berries, peaches, pears and whatever’s fresh at Sue’s Produce. The fruit strip is available year-round with fruits tweaked according to the season. 35 S. 19th St. 215-563-0759
Black Currant Chocolate Cake at Pumpkin
Charming restaurant and market Pumpkin scours the city for unique produce at its peak with the help of natural foods guru and forager David Siller. With an unwavering devotion to local foods, Pumpkin changes its menu daily based on what’s available and scrumptiously in-season in Philly.
Dessert du jour: Chef Christopher Kearse’s luscious chocolate cake is made with sweet and earthy black currants from Culton Organics at Headhouse Farmers’ Market. This dense cake is made with black sesame génoise (chocolate sauce) chocolate crumble and black currant sorbet and jam. The cake will be on Pumpkin’s Sunday menu for the remainder of the summer season. 1713 South St., 215-545-4448
Summer Pumpple Cake at Flying Monkey Bakery
Reading Terminal Market’s Flying Monkey Bakery is known for its creative sweets fashioned by owner Elizabeth Halen. Using ingredients from the neighboring Iovine Brothers Urban Produce Market and the Fair Food Farmstand, Halen whips up delicious whoopie pies and cakes.
Dessert du jour: Haven is currently serving a variation of her infamous pumpple cake, a hybrid cake-pie slathered in butter cream. The carefully crafted dessert starts with a cherry pie baked inside a velvety chocolate cake bathed in butter cream and topped with, wait for it, a blueberry pie baked inside vanilla cake covered in more butter cream. Available by the slice, the summer pumpple cake is available on weekends through September. 51 N. 12th St., 215-928-0340