The Great Canadian Baking Show

Recipe: Italian Flag Focaccia

Sabrina Degni’s focaccia is a celebration of the Italian flag, made with homemade pesto, roasted onions and garlic and fresh tomatoes.

Sabrina Degni’s focaccia is a celebration of the Italian flag, made with homemade pesto, roasted onions and garlic and fresh tomatoes.

The flavours and execution wowed the judges during bread week on The Great Canadian Baking show — Rochelle praised its “great looking bottom.”

Make Sabrina’s signature bake at home.



  • 1 8g package active dry yeast
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 3/4 cups bread flour
  • ¼ cup semolina flour
  • 1 ½ tsp salt, divided
  • ⅔ cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 5 cloves garlic, sliced
  • Pinch salt


  • ½ cup basil leaves
  • ¼ flat leaf parsley
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp toasted pine nuts
  • 3 tbsp grated parmesan
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ cup chopped bocconcini


  • 15 cherry tomatoes
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan
  • ½ tsp dried oregano



Stir yeast and sugar with warm water in a small bowl. Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes. 

In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine flour, semolina and 1 tsp salt on low.

Add yeast mixture to flour mixture with ¼ cup oil; stir to combine to a ragged dough.

Change to a dough hook and knead on low for 5 minutes until dough is smooth. Remove dough to a well-oiled bowl, turning to coat in oil. Cover with a clean, damp kitchen towel. Let rise in a warm area until doubled in size, about 1 hour.


Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, garlic and salt. Cook until beginning to brown, 5 to 7 minutes.


Combine all ingredients except olive oil and bocconci in a blender, pulse until finely chopped. With blender running, add oil in a slow stream to make a pesto mixture.


Once dough has doubled, grease a rimmed 15 x 10-inch baking sheet with 2 tbsp olive oil. Press dough to edges of pan, indenting with finger tips. Cover with kitchen towel and proof for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 475°F.

In a small bowl, combine remaining oil and salt with rosemary. Brush oil mixture onto dough.

Spread pesto mixture on left third of focaccia, sprinkle with bocconcini. Spoon onion mixture onto center third. Dollop right third with tomatoes and sprinkle with parmesan and oregano.

Bake until golden, about 15 to 17 minutes.

Servings: Makes 8 servings


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