Looking forward to reading and reviewingA BEAUTY SO RARETamera Alexander‘s latest Historical Novel Release!

Sharing this video exploring the inspiration behind

A Beauty So Rare, the second standalone novel in the

 Belmont Mansion series by Tamera Alexander. 

In anticipation, author, Tamera Alexander,
has offered us some tempting tidbits…

Grab your favourite cup of tea in a fav spot to relaxand enjoy this tasty recipe of our main character, Eleanor  ~

Eleanor Braddocks Savory Custard
{or Ham and Cheddar Quiche}

This seriously creates some cravings !

Most people think quiche originated in France. Not so. Its originally a German dish and people referred to them as “savory custards” in the 19th century. Which is accurate since the egg-based mixture forms a luscious custard as it bakes.
In my novel, A Beauty So Rare, the second standalone novel in the Belmont Mansion series, the heroine, Eleanor Braddock, is “a cook with a dream.” But her dreams dont quite turn out like she thinks they will. However, her savories always do!
I hope you enjoy this recipe (or “receipt” as recipes were called in the 1800s) from
A Beauty So Rare. For more about A Beauty So Rare and for recipes from all my novels, visit TameraAlexander.
1 old-fashioned unbaked pie crust (see recipe below)
1 large onion, diced (or sliced if you like larger pieces of onion in your savory)
2 tablespoons butter
1 pound cooked ham diced into cubes (if using bacon, use 8 slices, fried chewy, not too crisp)
8 large eggs
1-1/2 cups heavy cream or half-and-half
1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper, or to taste (I always go heavier on the pepper, personal preference)
1 3/4 cups sharp cheddar cheese, grated
Sauté onion in the butter in a skillet over medium-low heat for about 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion is golden brown. Set aside to cool.
Chop the ham into bite-sized pieces (or fry your bacon until chewy, then chop). Set aside to cool. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Roll out pie crust and press into a deep dish pie plate. A medium-sized iron skillet works wonderfully for making a savory custard (and is what Eleanor used). The crust comes out divine. I just happened to use a pie plate this time.

Whip the eggs, cream, salt and pepper in a large bowl, then mix in the onions, ham (or bacon), and cheese. Pour the mixture into the pie crust. Cover the pie plate (or skillet) lightly with aluminum foil and bake for 40 to 45 minutes. Remove the foil and continue baking for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the quiche is set and the crust is golden brown.

QUICK BAKING TIPS: The quiche may still seem a little loose when you first remove it from the oven, but it will firm up nicely once removed from the heat. Also, watch that lovely crust so the edges dont get overly brown. I use a silicone pie crust shield if that starts to happen. Those are a fabulous invention
(but foil crimped around the edges works just as well).

Remove from the oven and allow the savory custard to rest for 10 to 15 minutes before diving in. Its so good, and just like Eleanor Braddock would make.
s also delicious left over and warmed up the next day.
{ If you happen to have any leftover ! }
Eleanor Braddocks Old-Fashioned Pie Crust
(makes two large crusts)
From the novel A Beauty So Rare
This is a wonderful crust that Ive been using for years.
Eleanor would likely have used lard in place of Crisco
(since lard was cheaper than butter in her day), and you may too, if you prefer.
Yes, lard is still available on most grocery shelves, although I
m pretty sure
I just felt you shudder!
This pie crust “freezes beautifully ” as they say in Steel Magnolias
(instructions on freezing below), so even though I may need only one pie crust
at the moment, I always use this recipe and make a second, and freeze it for later.
Makes that next pie (or savory custard) go twice as fast!
1 ½ cups Crisco (or lard)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 egg
5 tablespoons ice water
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
In a large bowl, using a pastry cutter (or two knives will do the job), gradually work the Crisco into the flour for 3 to 4 minutes until it resembles coarse meal. In a smaller bowl, whip the egg and then pour it into the flour/shortening mixture. Add 5 tablespoons of ice-cold water, 1 tablespoon of white vinegar and 1 teaspoon of salt. Stir gently until all ingredients are blended well.
Halve the dough. Form 2 evenly-sized balls of dough and place each into large sealable plastic bags. Using a rolling pin, slightly flatten each to about 1/2 inch thickness to make rolling easier later. Seal the bags and place them in the freezer until you need them. (If youre using the crusts immediately, its still a good idea to let them chill in the freezer for about 15- 20 minutes. Theyll be much easier to work with.)
When youre ready to roll the dough for your crust, remove from the freezer and allow to thaw for 15 minutes (if its frozen). On a well-floured surface, roll the dough, starting at the center and working your way out. Sprinkle flour over the top of the dough if its too moist. If the dough starts to stick to the countertop, use a metal spatula and gently scrape it up and flip it over and continue rolling until its about ½inch larger in diameter than your pie plate (or iron skillet).
Using a spatula, carefully lift the dough from the surface of the counter into the pie pan. (I sometimes fold my well-floured dough in half and then “unfold” it onto iron skillet. Or you can lop it over your rolling pin. That works well, too.) Gently press the dough against the sides of the pan or skillet, getting it all tucked in. Then crimp the edges in whatever way you prefer. And now, youre ready for that yummy savory custard filling above, or maybe for a fruit pie.

A final word from the lovely Tamera Alexander ~
If you make this recipe

(or if you
ve read A Beauty So Rare),
d love to hear from you. You can write me through my website at
Tamera Alexander
Find Tamera on facebook   and twitter @tameraalexander  *Don’t miss A BEAUTY SO RARE ~
I’ll be back once my review copy has arrived
and reading has been savoured !
*Find and follow FHC online:– GFC at bottom of page – @_eHope – Goodreads – Facebook – Pinterest

* Natasha’s Say G’Day Party *
NO Rules Blog Party @ Sincerely, Paula *
Pink Saturdays
* Katherine’s Fav Things ** Homemaking Party ** Friendship Friday *



  1. Such lovely guests at today's table for Tamera's savoury quiche !
    A pleasure to share it with you – Thank you for joining in !
    and now that I've just received my review copy, I'm immersed in the pages of a great read for this weekend. I'll be sure to let you know what I learn =)

  2. Hi again – popping in from the Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop at Katherine's Corner. Love to connect with so many other great bloggers this way! These books look very interesting – I guess it is time for me to try a new author as I usually read everything I can find by an author once I find one I like, and I've recently finished several books by Bodie Thoene. Also, I'll have to give your pie crust recipe a try – I've never been very good at making pies, so maybe it is time to try again! Thanks for sharing and hope to catch up with you again this week at the blog hop. Stop by for a visit when you get a minute at Vintage Mama's Cottage @ Nina

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