Grilled mushroom and white bean dip

Grilled mushroom and white bean dip

Grilled mushroom and white bean dip

Well my story isn’t done. It’s barely even started. Yesterday I wasted lots of time waxing eloquent about how I wanted to write a story, and it sounded like it was going to be a pretty good one, all glowy and underwatery. And I actually wrote one in my head, or part of one at least. And then I got home all eager to write it down, opened up my notebook, and…naw, that’s no good. And then I spent some time looking for another picture to write about, but I couldn’t even do that, I couldn’t pick one. And I started maybe three different stories, but didn’t like any of them, and I began to feel like Isaac, frustrated and angry, yelling at myself, “I HAVE TO WRITE A STORY! WHY WON’T YOU LET ME WRITE A STORY!” I fear my little writer’s block-clearing exercise is giving me a mean case of writer’s block. Or maybe it’s the heat, it’s probably the heat. Anyway, I thought I’d tell you instead about a storyteller that I admire very much (thanks, Saneshane!). His name is Jeffrey Lewis, and he tells stories with pictures and songs. His songs are musically simple but very sweet and compelling, and his lyrics are wonderful. He tells stories about moments of his life that might not seem all that eventful, but that become memorable and meaningful in his songs. He’s witty, pessimistic, hopeful, honest and philosophical, and all in a lovely confiding conversational style. He’s brilliant but self-deprecating, discouraged but full of life. He also writes comic books, and sometimes he tells stories with pictures and songs at the same time. In fact, he did a whole series of songs for the History Channel on subjects such as the French Revolution and the Fall of Rome.

Here are some songs I like by him.


I like them all, actually, but I’m late for work.

This recipe is super easy! It’s a great way to use up leftover grilled vegetables. You just purée them with some beans and spices, and you’re done! It’s great with crackers or chips or spread on crusty bread. Or serve it with oven-roasted fries and a salad as a meal. It would work really well with leftover grilled red peppers, too.

2 portobello mushrooms, grilled (or the equivalent amount of smaller mushrooms)
1 can white beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup grated sharp cheddar
1 clove roasted garlic (optional)
1/3 cup olive oil
2 t balsamic
3 or 4 fresh sage leaves, chopped
2 t fresh rosemary
salt and plenty of freshly ground pepper

Combine everything in a food processor or blender and purée till smooth. Add just enough water to make it as thin and smooth as you like it, and purée again. Grate fresh pepper on top, and serve.

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