THE FACTORY Tomato and Mushroom Soup

  • Prep Time
    5 minutes
  • Cook Time
    15 minutes
  • Serving
  • View


The Factory was Andy Warhol‘s studio in New York City, which had four locations between 1963 and 1987. The Factory became famed for its parties in the 1960s. It was the hip hangout spot for artists, musicians, celebrities and Warhol’s superstars. The original Factory was often referred to as the Silver Factory.  In the studio, Warhol’s workers would make silkscreens and lithographs under his direction. (Wikipedia).  Warhol painted over 32 cans of soup in the early sixties, creating pop art out of something every American was familiar with but had not previously considered a work of art. Some say Warhol loved to eat Campbell’s soup but his inspiration for painting the cans appears to be a bit more complicated.  He was a stylish window dresser and shoe illustrator making a name for himself among the fashionable glitterati in New York when he came up with the idea of making industrial soup cans into art. The inspiration for this soup was actually a dish I used to order in The Grill Room at the Windsor Court, a duo of creamy tomato and mushroom soups poured into opposite sides of a bowl so that the soups do not blend.  The result is beautiful but most important it’s delicious too.  In the past I have made this dish with homemade soups made from homemade stocks! But on a weekday night when I did not have time to make homemade soup, I used my favorite jarred tomato basil soup and Campbell’s canned beefy mushroom soup.  The soups were close enough in thickness and viscosity that they settled next to each other in my soup bowl but did not mix together.  This was a pretty wonderful meal – simple, elegant and really tasty.  Looking at the can of soup on my counter, I was reminded of Andy Warhol’s art and so the soup is now The Factory soup!  It’s fun to make something that is pretty and good to eat.  And at the end of a hard day, treating yourself to a moment of quiet indulgence makes it all worthwhile.



Tomato and Mushroom Soup


    Step 1

    Heat the soups in separate saucepans or small pots.

    Step 2

    Pour the soups into separate measuring cups or other cups or beakers from which you can pour.

    Step 3

    Carefully pour the soups into the bowl. This is the only trick to this dish. Pour from opposite sides of the soup bowl at the same time so that the soups meet in the middle but do not blend. Pour slowly - if you want more tomato or more mushroom soup you can control that but the soup looks prettiest when you have equal amounts of soup on either side of the bowl.

    Step 4

    Garnish with chives and sour cream.

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