Be glad in the Lord and rejoice! Psalm 32:11

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Christmas Book Review - Holiday Buzz: A Coffeehouse Mystery by Cleo Coyle - Plus the recipe for Cleo's Chocolate Hazelnut Microwave Fudge!

Holiday time is party time in New York City, but after a sparkling winter bash ends with a murder, Village Blend coffeehouse manager Clare Cosi vows to put the killer on ice…
At the Great New York Cookie Swap, pastry chefs bake up their very best for charity. Clare is in charge of the beverage service, and her famous Fa-la-la-la Lattes make the gathering even merrier. But her high spirits come crashing down to earth, when she discovers the battered body of a hard-working baker’s assistant.
Police suspect a serial attacker whose escalating crimes have become known as “The Christmas Stalkings.” Clare’s boyfriend, NYPD detective Mike Quinn, finds reason to believe even more sinister forces are involved. Clare isn’t so sure—and when she finds a second bludgeoned baker, she becomes a target. Now Clare is spending the holiday season pouring over clues, and she’s not going to rest until justice is served.
Includes holiday and cookie recipes!

I just adore Cleo Coyle's "Coffeehouse Mystery" series, and especially love her holiday themed editions. 

This year's "Holiday Buzz" is, in my opinion, one of Cleo's best tales to date!  Filled with spine-tingling suspense, a little romance, and a lot of delicious recipes, this is one Christmas book that readers are sure to keep going back to time and time again!

Take a little time to celebrate the season with a good cup of your favorite coffee and "Holiday Buzz" - you'll be so glad you did!

Cleo Coyle is the pen name for a multipublished author who collaborates with her husband to write the nationally bestselling Coffeehouse Mysteries. Although they did not meet until adulthood, Cleo and her husband had very similar upbringings. Both were children of food-loving Italian immigrants, and both grew up in working-class neighborhoods outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, before moving to the Big Apple to begin their postcollege careers: Cleo as a journalist and children’s book and media tie-in author; and her husband as a magazine editor and writer. After finally meeting and falling in love, they married at the Little Church of the West in Las Vegas.

 Now they live and work in New York City, where they each write books independently and together, cook like crazy, haunt local coffeehouses, and drink a lot of joe. Among their many coauthored projects are the Haunted Bookshop Mysteries, written under the pen name Alice Kimberly.
Cleo enjoys hearing from readers. Visit her virtual Village Blend coffeehouse, where she also posts recipes and coffee industry news, at www.coffeehousemysteries.com

As a special treat - here is Cleo's recipe for fabulous and easy fudge that was featured in her book, "Murder by Mocha" - it's to die for!  (get it - to die for! lol!)



1 (14 ounce) can of sweetened condensed milk

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 (12 ounce) package good quality semisweet chocolate chips

1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt

1-1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup Nutella chocolate-hazelnut spread (room temperature)

Step 1 – Prep pan:

Crisscross the bottom of an 8 x 8 square pan with two sheets of parchment paper. The parchment sheets should be long enough to extend, like handles, over the edges of the pan.

Step 2 – Melt with microwave:    

Place the milk into a microwave safe bowl. Cut the butter into the milk. Pour in the chocolate chips, and microwave it all for 30 seconds. ONLY 30 seconds. Remove and stir. Nuke it for another 30 and remove to stir again. This should be enough time to melt the chocolate and butter. If not, continue microwaving and stirring in 20 second increments until everything is melted.


Do not simply microwave this mixture for 2 solid minutes without stirring. You run the risk of scorching the chocolate and ruining the fudge. Once chocolate is burned, there’s no saving it. Be sure to melt it slowly, in increments.

Step 3 – Finish the fudge:

Into the melted mixture, sprinkle the salt and measure in the vanilla and Nutella. Cleo note: Nutella should never be cooked in a microwave (this advice is also written on its label). High heat alters the texture and flavor, which is why I’m careful how I use it in recipes. What I want you to do is simply stir the Nutella into the melted mixture that comes out of the microwave. Stir from the bottom, lifting and folding to blend everything well.

Step 4 – Chill and cut:

Now pour the chocolate mixture into your lined pan. Using a rubber spatula or back of a spoon, smooth the top, leveling it off. Chill the pan in the refrigerator until firm—this will take approximately 3 hours. Remove and cut into small squares. To store, place fudge in an airtight container and keep in the refrigerator.

My great thanks to Berkley Books and Cleo Coyle for supplying the review copy of her book. I was not compensated for my opinion.


Carole said...

Great post for Weekend Cooking. Cheers

Loralee said...

Great post. Just finished HOLIDAY BUZZ and agree this is one of the best in the series. Loved it!

Mary (Bookfan) said...

I've read one of the coffee house mysteries and really enjoyed it so I'll add this to my list. Thanks for including the recipe!

(Diane) bookchickdi said...

That fudge looks so delicious; thank for sharing.

Cleo Coyle said...

Sharon - We're delighted that you've honored us with another spotlight in your Weekend Cooking feature, and we're so glad to know that you enjoyed our new entry in The Coffeehouse Mystery series. The next book is coming this fall (Billionaire Blend), and we'll tell you more about it in the new year.

Until then have a very happy holiday and a joyous New Year!
Thanks again...

~ Cleo Coyle
Coffeehouse Mystery.com
Cleo Coyle on Twitter

Cleo Coyle said...

Loralee - Just wanted to add a note of appreciation for the kind comment. Marc and love the holiday season in New York, and we're very pleased you enjoyed the book. Thank you!

Mary - We hope you do pick it up. It was a lot of fun to write, and we can only hope you and other readers have as good a time on the other end of the process.

Cheers and happy holidays, everyone!

~ Cleo
Coffeehouse Mystery.com
Cleo Coyle on Twitter

Beth F said...

I love cozy mysteries and this one sounds wonderful.

Oh, and the fudge? Yes, please.

Sharon Galligar Chance said...

Thank you all for stopping by, and especially to Cleo (Alice) - I so appreciate your kind words! Can't wait for the next book!