Anise is a member of the family of plants that includes carrots,
caraway, cumin, dill, fennel, and cilantro. Of all of these "umbels,"
anise is the plant that has the strongest "licorice" flavor the
essential oil of anise is used to flavor licorice candy which is usually
made without any licorice at all.
The sweet fragrance of the anise fruit and its essential oil is
due to to trans-anethole, making up to 90% of the oil. Other components
of the taste and smell of anise include estragol (iso-anethole), anise
aldehyde, anise alcohol, p-methoxy-acetophenone, pinene, limonene, and
The whole dried "fruit" or seed
Whole or ground fruits, although flavor is better if the fruits
are stored whole and then ground just before use. Anise is used in
French carrot dishes, East Indian curries, Hispanic stews, and
Scandinavian breads. It balances the flavors of bay leaf and cinnamon.
Anise is also used to flavor liqueurs such as ouzo, anisette, pastis,
Pernod, Ricard, anesone, ojen, aguardiente, arrak, kabib, and raki.
A teaspoon of freshly ground anise seed brewed into a tea can
help relieve congestion from allergies, colds, or flu, and settle upset
stomach with gas. Many herbalists note that the herb is also antiseptic,
antispasmodic, and soporific and that a few seeds taken with water will
often cure hiccups. But the best summary concerning Anise is that it is
a great spice to consume for those who have dyspeptic complaints after
eating certain dishes.
The process of heating anise in baked goods releases
compounds that act as very mild stimulants. The anethole released in
grinding and baking slows the decay of the baked goods that otherwise
might result from fungi or molds. Anise is also used to flavor many
herbal other herbal medicines.
Allergies are possible, but rare. The anethole in the essential
oil stimulates the release of estrogen in laboratory tests, but is not
known to be of significant benefit or detriment to hormonal balance in
humans. Not recommended while pregnant or nursing.
This product was added to our catalog on Tuesday 10 August, 2010.