Buca, Inc. is an industry leader in terms of growth in the number of restaurants it oversees. The company owns and operates 51 full service, dinner-only restaurants under the name Buca di Beppo. Its restaurants are located in 18 states as well as the District of Columbia. Buca di Beppo (meaning 'Joe's basement') restaurants differentiate from other Italian restaurant chains by providing distinctive oversized Southern Italian family style portions in a casual, festive, humorous, socially interactive atmosphere. Appealing to nostalgic trends, the décor at each of Buca's restaurants irreverently exaggerates the clichés of traditional postwar neighborhood Italian/American restaurants. In terms of scale, Buca thinks big: large food portions, large tables, and large restaurant size with an average seating capacity of 300.
Buca di Beppo Copycat Recipe
Makes 7 large meatballs
2 1/2 pounds ground beef, chuck
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons black pepper
3/4 cup Italian breadcrumbs
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
3 whole eggs
2 ounces garlic
Break down chubs of ground chuck into smaller half pound (8 oz) portions or quarter pound (4 oz). Before mixing, combine measured amounts of salt, black pepper, breadcrumbs and cheese and mix well in a mixing bowl.
In a large bowl, evenly layer in portions of ground chuck with mixed dry ingredients, whisked eggs and poached garlic. Spread throughout the bowl and distribute as evenly as possible so there are no “pockets” of ingredients. Mix thoroughly but Do not over mix the ingredients, as this will cause the meatballs to be tough.
Portion the mixture to 8 ounce or 4 ounce balls using a measuring cup ( 1 cup = 8 oz wt 1/2 cup= 4 oz wt) When forming the balls, handle as little as possible. Do not toss them from hand to hand or roll them on the prep table, but instead gently shape them in the palms of your hands. Place the meatballs on cake pan parchment paper lined sheet pans and cover with a plastic bag. Storage in refrigerator until needed.
7(8 oz.) or 14 (4 oz.) meatballs
9 cups marinara sauce
3 cups water
Preheated oven to 400 degrees. Placed meatballs in oven and bake for 15 minutes.
Combine the water with the marinara sauce and pour over the meatballs. Meatballs must be submerged in the sauce. Cover bake pan with aluminum foil and bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove and discard foil. Skim excess fat from the top of the liquid. Serve.