White Chocolate Mocha by Joanne Fluke

5 and ½ ounces white chocolate chips (Michelle used half of an eleven-ounce net weight bag of Ghirardelli Classic White)
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
2 and ½ cups whole milk
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
1 Tablespoon instant coffee granules (Michelle used Taster’s Choice)
Sweetened whipped cream to garnish
Freshly grated nutmeg to sprinkle on top

Place the white chocolate chips, along with the vanilla extract, in a microwave-safe bowl on the counter.

Heat the milk and the cinnamon in a saucepan on the stove at medium low heat, stirring constantly, steam and bubbles form around the edges of the saucepan. Do not let it boil! Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of instant coffee granules over the top of the heated milk and stir them in until dissolved.

Pour the simmering mixture over the white chocolate chips in the bowl. Stir once, and then cover it with a clean dishtowel, a lid that’ll fit it, or a piece of heavy-duty foil tucked in around the edges of the bowl and let sit for five minutes.

Remove lid and whisk briskly until the chips are melted and the mixture is smooth and creamy. Pour the White Chocolate Mocha into mugs and top with sweetened whipped cream sprinkled with freshly grated nutmeg.

Michelle’s Note: It was hot under the lights at the Food Channel competition so I didn’t have any trouble getting the white chocolate chips to melt, but Lisa told me that if she makes White Chocolate Mocha at home, she usually puts the white chocolate chips in her food processor and uses the steel blade to chop them up before she pours on the almost-boiling milk and coffee mixture. This takes less whisking than if you leave the chips whole.


Hannah is thrilled to marry Ross Barton, her college crush. And her excitement only grows when she learns he’ll be able to join her on her trip to New York City for the Food Channel’s dessert chef contest. She’s especially nervous about facing Alain Duquesne, a celebrity chef with a nasty reputation. But before he can tear into Hannah’s layer cake, she finds him stabbed to death on the show’s kitchen set. Out of the oven, as the saying goes, and into the bright lights of Broadway, as Hannah tries to solve a mystery with more layers than a five-tiered wedding cake…

Joanne Fluke lives in Southern California with her husband, her kids, his kids, their three dogs, one elderly tabby, and several noisy rats in the attic.