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. Roasting enhances the flavor.
Middle East, Portuguese, German, Italian, and French cuisines use
anise in seasoning blends such as curry, hoisin, sausage, and pepperoni
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