Copyright Thomas Saaristo  All Rights Reserved
Creamy shells with tuna
An updated twist on tuna noodle casserole. If you MUST have peas, go right ahead
and add 6 ounces fresh or frozen (do not thaw) baby peas to the tuna mixture
before stuffing into the shells

3 tablespoons canola oil
1 small yellow onion, diced small
1/4 cup flour
4 cups half & half
House salt
Black peppercorns in a peppermill
1 potato hamburger bun, torn into large pieces
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, then to taste
2 6 ounce cans tuna, drained and flaked
20 jumbo pasta shells, cooked according to package instructions

Heat oven to 375 degrees

Heat a medium sauce pan over medium high heat for 2 minutes. Add the oil and
swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. Add onion and cook until softened, about 6
minutes. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Gradually add milk,
whisking constantly, and cook until slightly thickened and bubbling, about 3
minutes. Season with salt and pepper and let sauce cool slightly

Add hamburger bun, Parmesan, Italian seasoning, lemon zest and red pepper flakes
to the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal chopping blade. Process into a
fine crumb. Transfer half the mixture to a large bowl and combine with tuna and
half the sauce; season with salt and pepper

Fill each shell with 2 heaping tablespoons spinach mixture and place in a 9 x 13 inch
baking dish. Top with remaining sauce and breadcrumb mixture

Bake until sauce is bubbling and breadcrumbs are golden, 25 to 35 minutes