One of my dearest friends cooks, bakes, and grills like a professional chef.  She loves to chop vegetables, says things like “ramekins” and has her own tablecloth named after her—The Christine—for purchase at The Palate in Stockholm, WI:  Preparing food has been her passion since before my husband and I met Christine and her husband, Mark, over 15 years ago.  It has been our good fortune to be the lucky recipients of many delicious meals and absolutely wonderful times in their home.  Since I am all about following our passion, this is my way of letting her have an outlet for hers.  Enjoy!


Protein, especially from animal, root vegetables and mushrooms are all foods that are considered healing for the root chakra. The following recipe incorporates all of these foods for an earthy, satisfying meal that is especially comforting during the long winter evenings.

A piece of shepherd's pie on a plate.

Shepherd’s Pie

4 large potatoes peeled and cut into quarters
3 tbsp butter
¼ cup milk (Buttermilk works great) or you can substitute sour cream
1 egg

2 tbsp olive oil
1.5 lbs. of ground meat (can use beef, turkey, chicken or pork)
3 large carrots cut into 1 inch pieces
1 parsnip cut in 1 inch pieces
1 medium onion coarsely chopped
8 oz mushrooms sliced (1 package)
3 cloves garlic chopped
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup stock (beef, chicken or veggie)
1 tbsp cornstarch

Recipe – Boil potatoes in salt water for about 15 minutes (until soft when pierced with fork). When cooked, mash potatoes and add butter and milk. Add egg yolk and mix well.

While potatoes cook, sauté the carrots, parsnips, onions in olive. Cook for 5-7 minutes on medium heat until browned.

Add the mushrooms and cook for an additional 5 minute.
Add the ground meat and cook until browned.
Add the garlic and cook 1 minute.
Add Worcestershire sauce.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Add cornstarch to cold stock and mix well.
Add the stock to pan and simmer for 5 mins.

Pour mixture into casserole dish. Spoon mashed potatoes on top and smooth over mixture.

Bake at 350 for about 20-25 minutes until top is brown and mixture bubbly.