Cooking from the Bar Cart: Sherried Cherry Tomato Tart

Spanish sherry lends complexity to this roasted tomato tart bursting with juicy flavor


A sherry glaze and a quick blast in the oven are the secrets to enhancing the inherent sweetness of cherry tomatoes in this puff pastry tart. The fortified wine’s distinctive notes of raisins and toasted almonds lend a concentrated, sun-dried complexity to the tomatoes but without sacrificing their pleasing juiciness.

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As for the sherry, opt for a good-quality Spanish sherry from Andalusia’s “sherry triangle” in southwest Spain for both sipping and cooking. (It’s best to avoid bottles labeled “sherry cooking wine” at the grocery store.) Sherry is a complex category, but at its essence, it is aged white wine produced from three predominant grape varieties: Pedro Ximénez, Palomino, and Moscatel. Sherry can be dry, naturally sweet, or blended. The majority of sherry produced is dry and made from Palomino grapes, which is the style called for here. A bit of sherry vinegar adds a bright tang to round out the flavor.

Sticking to the Spanish theme, the custardy base of this tomato tart features the classic mayonnaise mixed with nutty Manchego cheese, citrus zest, rosemary, and sweet smoked paprika. Store-bought puff pastry works fine for this recipe (I like the Dufour brand). Just thaw it in the refrigerator for two to three hours before you start. Any way you slice it, the tart with its golden, buttery crust and roasted tomato topping is as fitting served room temperature with a crisp salad on a scorching summer day as it is served warm with a cup of hot soup when autumn’s chill arrives.

See other recipes in our Cooking from the Bar Cart series.


  • Sherried Cherry Tomato Tart (Yield: 6 servings)

    • 1 (14-oz.) package puff pastry dough, thawed

    • 1 egg yolk

    • 1 tsp. water

    • 3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

    • 1 medium sweet onion, such as Vidalia, finely diced

    • 3 large garlic cloves, minced

    • 3 tbsp. dry sherry

    • 1 tbsp. sherry vinegar

    • 1 tbsp. sugar

    • 1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

    • 1 ½ tsp. kosher salt

    • 4 pints cherry tomatoes

    • 6 oz. Manchego cheese, finely grated (about 1 ½ cups)

    • ½ cup mayonnaise

    • 1 tbsp. lemon zest

    • 1 tsp. minced fresh rosemary

    • ½ tsp. sweet smoked paprika

    • 1 tbsp. Dijon mustard

    • Flaky sea salt, for garnish

    • Rosemary leaves, for garnish

    • Minced fresh chives, for garnish


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Place thawed dough on a floured surface. Dust top lightly with flour and gently roll into a 10-by-16-inch rectangle. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Score dough on all sides about ¾-inch from the edge with the point of a sharp knife, being careful not to cut all the way through. Whisk together egg yolk and water and brush dough all over. Cut a few slashes across the center of the dough, avoiding edges, to keep it from puffing up in the oven. Transfer to the oven and bake 20 minutes until the edges are puffed and golden. Make sure to let cool 5 minutes before adding the toppings.

  2. While pastry is in the oven, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil, onion, and garlic. Cook, stirring, until onion softens, about 3 minutes. Add sherry, sherry vinegar, sugar, red pepper flakes, and salt, and stir until sugar melts and liquid is syrup, about 3 minutes. Toss the cherry tomatoes with the contents of the skillet to coat with the sherry glaze and aromatics. Transfer the tomato mixture to a second parchment-lined baking sheet in a single layer. Roast in the preheated oven for 8 to 10 minutes. 

  3. Meanwhile, stir together 1 cup grated Manchego with the mayonnaise, lemon zest, rosemary, smoked paprika, and Dijon mustard until combined. 

  4. Gently spread the mayonnaise mixture onto the par-baked crust. Arrange cherry tomatoes on top. Sprinkle with the remaining ½ cup grated Manchego. Return the tart to the oven and bake 5 minutes more until grated cheese is melted and pastry edges are golden brown. Remove tart from oven and garnish with flaky sea salt, rosemary leaves, and minced chives. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Katherine Cobbs is a cookbook author and editor. Her recent books are Pantry Cocktails (2021), Tequila & Tacos (2020), and Cookies & Cocktails (2019) published by Simon & Schuster. She also developed recipes for Garden & Gun’s The Southerner’s Cookbook – Recipes, Wisdom, and Stories.