Category Archives: Off Campus

Taking a Bite out of the Big Apple

As we all know, New York City is home to many television networks such as ABC and NBC. Yesterday I had an amazing opportunity to be apart of the live studio audience in a recording of ABC’s top daytime television show The Chew! Aside from being a huge fan of the show, I was interested to see what really happens behind scenes, and how the cast and crew collaborate to create it.


The experience was AWESOME. The show was on how to make “Breakfast for Less” which as a broke college student I thought was very helpful! Guests included American celebrity chef, restaurateur, and reality television personality Bobby Flay and actor Kevin Bacon. During the breaks, American chef and one of the hosts of The Chew – Carla Hall, ran up to the audience to dance with people (including myself) which I thought was very sweet and humbling of her.


My ticket!

As a gift, we were given Bobby Flay’s new brunch cookbook. To bring in the Fall spirit, I thought I’d share a delicious and inexpensive Mini Pumpkin Churro with a chocolate-orange dipping sauce recipe from the book!


Brunch @ Bobby’s by Bobby Flay


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, plus more for finishing
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 3/4 cup pure pumpkin puree
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • Vegetable or canola oil, for frying
  • 3/4 cup pure cane granulated sugar, for rolling


  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • Zest of one orange
  • teaspoon grated orange zest


For the dipping sauce: Bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan. Put the chocolate in a medium bowl. Add the hot cream to the bowl with the chocolate and let sit for 1 minute. Gently whisk until smooth. Stir in the orange zest. Keep warm.

For the churros: Whisk together the flour, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, the cloves, 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, the nutmeg and salt in a large bowl. Bring 1 1/2 cups water, the pumpkin puree, butter and vanilla to a boil in a medium saucepan, whisking constantly.

Pour the pumpkin mixture into the bowl with the flour mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until just combined; it will be thick. Continue mixing and add in your eggs, one at a time, until well combined. The dough should be thick and smooth. Place the dough into a pastry bag with a large star tip.

Heat 2 inches of canola oil in a high-sided saute pan until it reaches 350 degrees F on a candy or fry thermometer.

Pipe the dough directly into the pan in 3-inch pieces, cutting off the pieces with a scissor. Fry until golden and crispy, 4 to 5 minutes.

Stir together the sugar and remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon in a medium shallow bowl. Transfer the churros to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet or plate to drain the oil and immediately toss in the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Dip in the chocolate-orange dipping sauce to serve.


Besides being starstruck, I noticed how much effort it takes into making a television production. From lighting, to audio, cameramen/women and so forth. FIT’s Advertising and Marketing Communications and Film and Media programs are definitely ones you would want to pursue in order to be in the studio everyday as I saw first-hand!

In the studio!

In the studio!

If you are currently in the city – take advantage of the big apple and take a bite! There are so many things to do and people to see in the city that never sleeps! If you aren’t, I encourage to pursue your education in the city and school that gives to endless opportunities that you will benefit from.

Until next time… xoxo – M

Celebration Treats!

With all of the upcoming holidays this fall and winter season, it is the perfect time to celebrate and show your appreciation for professors, friends, and family.  No idea what to purchase?  I’m here to help you out with the best sweet treats in the city!

Who: Treat House
What: Gourmet Rice Krispie Treat boxes perfect to send to Mom & Dad
BONUS: Customize your Rice Krispie Treat with a picture.  Perfect for wedding anniversaries!
Where: 452 Amsterdam Ave., 1566 Second Ave, OR here.
Price: $26+ for gift boxes

Who: Momofuku Milk Bar
What: DELICIOUS various cookies, cakes, AND BIRTHDAY CAKE TRUFFLES!
Where: 251 East 13th St, 15 West 56th St, 561 Columbus Ave, 382 Metropolitan Ave (BK), 360 Smith St (BK) OR here
Price: $2.25+

Who: Sprinkles Cupcakes
What: Cupcakes made for mouthwatering (gluten free options available)
Where: 780 Lexington Ave (Cupcake ATM + Store), 225 Liberty St OR here
Price: $2 mini, $3.75 regular, $42 dozen

Who: Levain Bakery
What: The most famously large and in charge cookies in all of NYC
Where: 167 West 74th St, 2167 Frederick Douglass Blvd, OR here
Price: $27+ for gift boxes, $4 each for a cookie

Who: Erin McKenna Bakery (GLUTEN FREE!)
What: The ultimate destination for your gluten free dessert loving friend that is sure to not disappoint!
Where: 248 Broome St OR here
Price: $1.25+

Who: Laduree
What: Macarons fresh from Paris for a taste of elegance
Where: 864 Madison Ave, 398 West Broadway, OR here
Price: $2.80+

Who: Garrett’s Popcorn Shop
What: Gourmet buckets of popcorn perfect for a large family or that game day snack
Where: 242 West 34th St OR here
Price: $33 for 1 gallon tin

What: The doughnut shops of all doughnut shops.  Massive portions, amazing flavors, do I need to say more?
Where: 14 West 19th St, 448 Lafayette Ave (BK), OR here
Price: $2.25+

Who: Fat Witch Bakery
What: Rich brownies that put Pillsbury to shame
Where: 75 9th Ave (Chelsea Market) OR here
Price: $2.95+

Don’t forget to treat yourself this holiday season too!


Notes From the 6 Train: Gettin’ Down w/ the Green

We now officially in fall! Yay! The fall solstice just passed, and that means that begins the countdown on our warm & sunny days. Here are a few things you should do (aka things I’ve did) before fall is gone and winter is here!
Living in a city without many natural landscapes to escape to is challenging for me. I don’t have a car nor do I know how to drive, so though there are many places upstate to go, not being able to drive seventy limits those options. However, I am not easily deterred. I need nature to maintain my sanity, so I found some cheat-codes to connect with nature if you don’t have the time, or money or ability to take a trip upstate. I began volunteering at a community garden.


I also took a hike to Wave Hill to check out their botanical gardens. It was so peaceful and serene. I felt as if I wasn’t even in NYC anymore. I won’t do much writing about it, and let the photos speak for themselves.


Thus far, I have been keeping up with my goal of being outside a lot, and am looking forward to even more exploration while the weather holds up!
What about you? Have you been maintaining your goals you set for this semester?

All Things Color, Love & Fashion,
Ayanna Lane

Fall Festivities

Hey everyone!

So recently I came across some really fun fall festivities all over the internet, and I don’t know about you but fall is my absolute favorite season. So I thought id let you guys in on some really awesome day/weekend trips which are coming up.


HARRY POTTER FEST!! Chestnut hill, PA October 17-18

Its a little bit of a hike to get there but for two days straight you eat, sleep, breathe harry potter. Oh and did I mention dressing up is highly encouraged? How awesome is that. I will definitely be at this event. The 17th is a bar crawl to all harry potter inspired bars and restaurants while the 18th is events, even a quidditch match. (how

Oktoberfest Hoboken, NJ September 25-26

The Catholic Community of Saints Peter & Paul in Hoboken celebrates Oktoberfest with a beer garden from 6 to 10 p.m. Friday; party from noon to 10 p.m. Saturday; and kids village from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday at Hudson Street between 4th and 5th streets

Fall Arts and Music Festival Hoboken, NJ September 27

This has music on three stages, more than 300 artists, crafters and food vendors, and a children’s section at 3rd Street. 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., rain or shine, on Washington Street between Observer Highway and 7th Street. Admission free

Pumpkin Show October 9-11 Woodstown, NJ

The 12th South Jersey Pumpkin Show is an explosion of gourd-related activity, with a pumpkin weigh-off, giant pumpkin pyramid and Little Miss & Mister Pumpkin Show, which is a pumpkin-themed children’s pageant. 5 to 9 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday; and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at Salem County Fairgrounds in Woodstown. Free admission; parking $5 per car.

Indian Festival of lights, Jersey City NJ October 24

a Diwali celebration, returns to Jersey City with food, performances and vendors. Noon to 6 p.m., Grundy Pier and Exchange

And last but not least….

THE ZOMBIE WALK! Smithsville, NJ October 31

The Zombie Walk in Asbury Park may be dead, but Smithville’s annual procession of the undead is still in full effect. 10 a.m. to 7 p.m

There are so many more fun and exciting things coming up even around NYC. Go on facebook or even just google and see what’s going on near you. Do you have any suggestions for places to go? Let me know, I love going on new adventures!

Happy fall y’all




Guide to Museums

If you aren’t aware of this already, New York City has some of the best museums in the entire world.  We are in the hub of a major art scene and as students, we can fully take advantage of it!  Be sure to bring your FIT ID when you visit these museums!  The following is your guide to the Museums of New York City:

  • American Museum of Natural History (Central Park West & 79th St)
    • Price Type: Suggested
      • Amount: $17 (Student)
  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art (5th Ave & 82nd St)
    • Price Type: Suggested
      • Amount: $12 (Student)
  • Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) (6th Ave & 53rd St)
    • Price Type: FREE for FIT Students when you present your ID!
  • Guggenheim (5th Ave & 88th St)
    • Price Type: Fixed
      • Amount: $10 (Until October 8th), Regularly $18
  • Whitney Museum of American Art (10th Ave & Gansevoort St)
    • Price Type: Fixed
      • Amount: $18
  • New York City Transit Museum (Boerum Pl & Schermerhorn Street, Brooklyn)
    • Price Type: Fixed
      • Amount: $7
  • The Frick Collection (5th Ave & 70th St)
    • Price Type: Fixed
      • Amount: $10
  • Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum (5th Ave & 91st St)
    • Price Type: Fixed
      • Amount: $9

Hope this helps you explore the city with ease!  Happy museum hopping!