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.

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Stuffed Shells



STUFFED SHELLS
Buca di Beppo Restaurant Recipe

1 pound Italian sausage
1 box of large pasta shells
1 (32 oz.) carton of Ricotta cheese
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
12 ounces frozen spinach with the water squeezed out
4 cloves garlic minced
2 cups Italian blend shredded cheese
1/2 tablespoon crushed red pepper
2 quarts of your favorite pasta sauce

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Bring a large saucepan of salted water to boil. Add the shells and cook for 15 minutes. The shells will not be done completely. Drain the shells and run cold water over them.

Put a large frying pan over medium heat, add the sausage and crushed red peppers (depending how spicy you want it you can use as little or as much red pepper as you desire) and cook sausage thoroughly, breaking into very small pieces.

In a large bowl combine the ricotta cheese the shredded Italian cheese blend, garlic, basil and spinach then mix well.

Place 1/2 cup cup of pasta sauce into a 9x13 inch baking dish. With a spoon coat the bottom of the pan with the pasta sauce.

Take each pasta shell individually and stuff with the cheese mixture, it will take about 3 to 4 tablespoons of the mixture for each shell. Lay the shells into the pan coated with sauce, open side up. Continue until the baking dish if full. Pour what remains of the first quart of pasta sauce over the top of the shells. You will have enough ingredients to fill another pan so repeat the above steps.

Cover each baking dish in foil and place into the oven. Bake for 30 minutes.

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