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Star Anise Is Native To China, India

Star or Chinese Anise is a stronger flavored spice than other species of the the Anise family. This variety is most popular in Chinese And Vietnamese, and Indian cooking. This particular Anise fruit comes from an evergreen ornamental tree. It is a member of the Magnolia family. It can mature up to 26 feet. One aspect that sets this Anise family member apart from others, is the striking shaped seed pods. There are around eight points on each pod and a seed in each one. Every aspect of this tree is aromatic, from the gray-white bark, narrow and shiny leaves, delicate yellow flowers, and the shiny brown seeds. The fruit develops on the tree and is picked before it is totally ripen. The fruit is dried in a sunny location. This tree is grown is mainly in China and Japan and the seeds, oils, and leaves are exported all over the world as well as sold in local markets.

Star Anise

This Star like other Anise, is sown from seed. Herbee has not grown this type of Anise, but have done ground germination with other family members. Anise doesn't transplant well, and should be sown in full sun, light soil, and a key is to water generously. You can thin out the Star Anise when they get to be around four to five inches high. Thin about six to eight inches apart and rows of about to feet apart. The Pimpinella anisum Anise that Herbee grew, is a member of the Parsley family.

The Star Anise unique characteristics allows many culinary chefs around the world to enjoy its flavor and aroma. Anise is known for a licorice flavor and smell. The seeds and leaves are used in many different authentic dishes around the world. The oil is used in soaps, hair oils, and Asian perfumes. The flowers are used in many different dried arrangements as well as many culinary dishes. The Chinese use this spice in chicken, duck, pork and fish. This particular Anise is on the five powder ingredients in many Chinese dishes you experience in restaurants.

Many different types of Anise are also very popular in baked goods such as cakes, cookies, and breads. In Germany, it is a traditional ingredient in German pfeffernusse. The English love to use it in a delicious rum sauce over puddings. The Croatian cooks simmering stir it into simmering sautés. The Spanish love to add Anise in their Easter cakes. The Anise is also used in herbal teas. I have used the Star Anise in some poultry dishes and sautés. Here is a recipe for a simple flavoring over bone or boneless chicken. You have the option of grinding the seeds up or you can use them whole or in pieces.

Herbee's Free Chicken Recipe

Herbee Greenthumb
  • Four to six pieces of chicken
  • One to two teaspoons of Sesame Seeds
  • One half teaspoon of fresh juice from a lemon
  • Clove of fresh crushed garlic
  • Olive oil
  • Two leaves from Cinnamon Basil - chopped
  • Three to four pieces of Anise - crushed

Wash the chicken and coat with the olive oil. I usually use Extra Virgin Olive oil, due to the lightness. Mix together the garlic, basil, sesame seeds, and anise. Sprinkle this mixture evenly over each piece of chicken. Drip the fresh lemon juice over each piece of chicken.

Baking time will vary due to the type of chicken you use. You can also use this recipe for grilling. I will do a complete meal on the grill using this chicken recipe. Roast some fresh vegetables and make an herbal sauté to compliment the taste of the vegetables. The Star Anise is just one spice, and there are other herbs you can use for appetizers.

This variety of Anise offers many different possibilities when cooking. If it is not possible to grow in your geographic location, the Pimpinella anisum variety is very popular in container and ground gardens.

Other Articles Related.

Herbs Garden Plans --- Garlic

How To Plan A Garden --- More Spices

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