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Make it and Take it: Appetizer

Make it and Take it: Appetizer
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Start to finish: 1 hour
Hands-on time: 40 minutes

A cross between a tart and a pizza, pissaladière is like a rich and flaky French dream of a pizza. The combination of meltingly sweet browned onions, tart tomatoes and salty olives on buttery pastry makes this the perfect dish perfect for your next holiday party. If you like them, show your Gallic spirit with a few anchovies sprinkled over the top. Vive la pissaladière!

It’s that easy: Slicing the onions as thinly as possible will yield the tenderest, brown and caramelized onions. I like to cut my onions in half through the north and south tips and then cut them following the lines on the skin instead of cutting them into the usual half rounds. That way the pieces are uniform in size and so cook more evenly.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt plus more for sprinkling
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus more for sprinkling
  • 1 package frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed in the refrigerator
  • 2 large tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup pitted and lightly chopped Kalamata olives
  • 16 salt-packed anchovies, rinsed and dried or packed in oil and patted dry (optional)
  • 1/4 cup, thinly sliced fresh basil
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F
  2. Heat a 12-inch or large skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil and when it shimmers, add the onions, salt and pepper. Sauté the onions stirring them occasionally until they become translucent and soften, about 10 minutes. Turn the heat down to medium-low and cook the onions, stirring every now and then until they become golden brown and caramelized, another 15 to 20 minutes. Remove them from the heat and set them aside.
  3. Sprinkle a little flour on a work surface and roll out the pastry into a rectangle 11-by13-inches. Place the dough on a parchment lined baking sheet and fold the edges 1/2-inch over the pastry to form an edge. Press the edges with the tines of a fork for a finished look. You now have the foundation for the pissaladière. Repeat the process with the second pastry on another sheet pan.
  4. Arrange the tomatoes on the pastry. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Top the tomatoes with the caramelized onions. Scatter the olives over the top followed by the anchovies (if using) and basil.
  5. Bake the pissaladières in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until the pastry is crisp and brown on the bottom. Cut each into 16 squares, sprinkle with parsley and serve hot or at room temperature.

Makes two 10-by-12-inch tarts yielding 32 pieces

Make-ahead: The pissaladières can be assembled, wrapped in plastic and frozen for up to 3 weeks. Thaw in the refrigerator and bake as directed. Can be baked up to 1 hour before serving.

In the glass: Rich puff pastry appetizers love a little bubbly. Choose your favorite sparkling wine or champagne to go with this pretty appetizer.

Make it and Take it: Appetizer

Make it and Take it: Appetizer

Carla Snyder

By Carla Snyder

Carla has spent the past 30 years in the food world as a caterer, artisan baker, cooking school teacher, food writer and author of 6 cook books including the James Beard nominated Big Book of Appetizers. Her passion is sharing fresh, cooked-from-scratch weeknight meals that cut prep time and practically eliminate that nightly sink full of dishes.

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