Toni Garcia Carpenter

Toni Garcia Carpenter is an author and freelance writer/producer. Carpenter lives in Jacksonville, Florida, with her husband, black cat, two tabbies, a spotted dog, and one or both kids and friends who show up for free food. She loves to cook and maintains a kitchen herb garden. Carpenter is the proud mother of two children whom she considers her greatest work.

Recipes by Toni Garcia Carpenter

  • Beer Bread This simple recipe can actually be a good starter recipe for a child to make. There are two dry ingredients that can give little ones their first experience measuring. Have them spoon the flour into the measuring cup over a piece of wax paper. Then show kids how to level the measure with the flat edge of a spatula or butter knife. Lift the wax paper and pour the excess right back into the flour container. Help the kids count each cup they measure and pour into the bowl. Repeat with the sugar. As the kids get older, you can show them that a 1/3 cup measure means you have to fill it three times to make a whole cup. After they whisk the flour and sugar together, you can pour in the liquid ingredient. The beer immediately reacts with the baking powder in the self-rising flour and the mixture starts to foam. This recipe is fun to make and simply delicious.
  • Crusty Baked Chicken This is a good intermediate dish for families with young children who are just beginning to acquire a taste for enhanced flavors. Because the chicken pieces are marinated, the meat is very tasty. The crust is mildly flavoredó the paprika adds a slight smokiness but mostly contributes to the color. You can give the dish more punch by adding salt and pepper or even garlic salt to the flour mixture for some or all of the chicken pieces. Serves 4-6 ½ c. olive oil 2 tsp. salt ¼ tsp. pepper 1-2 cloves garlic, minced ¼ tsp. oregano or thyme Dash of cayenne pepper 1 chicken, cut up, about 3 pounds (or equivalent in pieces) 1 c. flour 1 tsp. paprika This is a good intermediate dish for families with young children who are just beginning to acquire a taste for enhanced flavors. Because the chicken pieces are marinated, the meat is very tasty. The crust is mildly flavoredó the paprika adds a slight smokiness but mostly contributes to the color. You can give the dish more punch by adding salt and pepper or even garlic salt to the flour mixture for some or all of the chicken pieces.
  • Tamale Casserole When your family is ready for flavor, but not necessarily a lot of heat, this colorful dish is a savory standby with just enough sweetness from the corn muffin batter to make it especially tasty. Be sure to use regular chili powder if your family doesn't want a spicy kick.