Anise Article -
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Anise is the dried ripe fruit of the herb Pimpinella anisum. The crescent-shaped seeds are unmistakably identified by their distinctive licorice-like flavor. Anise is not related to the European plant whose roots are the source of true licorice.


Anise is used whole or crushed in cookies, cakes, breads, cheese, pickles, stews, fish and shellfish dishes. Roasting enhances the flavor. Middle Eastern, Portuguese, German, Italian and French cuisines use anise in seasoning blends such as curry, hoisin, sausage and pepperoni seasonings.


Most anise is produced in Spain but additional sources include Turkey and Egypt. Spanish anise is considered premium due to its better flavor, bolder appearance and higher volatile oil content.


Anise, one of the oldest cultivated spices, was enjoyed by the early Egyptians, Greeks and Romans. In first century Rome, anise was a flavoring in mustaceus, a popular spice cake baked in bay leaves and eaten after a feast to prevent indigestion. Anise became so valued in England that its import was taxed. In 1305, the import tolls collected on anise seed helped pay for repairs to the London Bridge.

botanical drawing of anise plant


    Oval, bold seeds with rigid surface



    Flavor & Aroma

    Pleasant, licorice-like, similar to fennel.

    Sensory Profile

    Anise is distinguished by its strong licorice-like flavor and aroma. The seeds are characterized by minty, piney, and fruity flavor notes. Anise's flavor also resembles that of fennel but is somewhat sweeter.

      Dec. 20, 2009 3:01 am
      I have a friend looking for a recipe his mother used to make when he was a child in Sweden. I have searched the web and found no results. Does anyone know of a recipe for Licorice Fudge? I thought of just adding Licorice oil or Anise maybe? I like licorice candy myself but seems like an odd flavor to me for fudge.
      Jan. 1, 2010 10:03 am
      I type in licorice fudge in a search engine (bing) and found where the candy can be ordered. There was several sites for candy. Hope this helps
      Apr. 18, 2012 7:02 pm
      I love using liquid anise in my candies & cookies.
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