Anise (Pimpinella anisum L.)

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Family. Celery – Apiaceae (Umbelliferae) 

General knowledge 

Aniseed was known as a spice and herb in Ancient Egypt, Rome, and Greece. It was used to treat many diseases. Aniseed is believed to be native to the Middle East. It is now cultivated in many countries for its aromatic fruit. Aniseed is widely cultivated in India, Mexico, Spain, France, Italy, Egypt, Turkey, Japan, and America. 

Botanical description 

Anise hyssop is an annual herbaceous plant, 0,30-0,50 m tall. The stem is erect and branched at the apex. Leaves are of three types: lower leaves stalked, generally obovate, toothed, middle pinnate, and upper leaves trifid. The inflorescence is a compound umbel. The flowers are white or pink. Blooms in June-July. The fruit is cleft, greenish-brown, and small.

Cultivation and preparation 

Aniseed Gooseberry is sown in beds in March-April. Mature plants or fruit umbels are cut. Drying is done in the shade and in a well-ventilated place. After drying out, the plants are cut down. Stored in containers. 

Active substances 

The fruit contains 2-3% essential oil with 80-90% anethole, up to 10% methyl chavicol, aniseed aldehyde, aniseed ketone, aniseed acid, and marines. It also contains oil, carbohydrates, protein, mucilage, starch, mineral salts, and other substances. Anethole gives the fruit its specific aroma. 

Therapeutic effects 

The pharmacological properties of aniseed are due to the high content of essential oil in its fruit. The essential oil has anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, diuretic, and expectorant properties lower arterial pressure, and increases gall bladder secretion. 

Aqueous decoctions of the fruit are used for gastrointestinal disorders, especially indigestion, spasms, and impaired gastric, hepatic, and pancreatic secretion. Treatment with aniseed preparations improves digestion, gastrointestinal function, and the disappearance of flatulence. 

For the infusion, 1 teaspoon of the ground fruit is poured over 250 ml of boiling water and strained after 10 minutes. For flatulence and stomach disorders, take 2-5 cups a day. For coughs, the same amount is taken with honey. Do not sweeten for diabetics. This infusion is particularly suitable for children. 

An excellent decoction is made from ground caraway, fennel, and aniseed (equal parts). Preparation and dosage for the aniseed infusion. 

Aniseed preparations are used to treat laryngitis, tracheitis, bronchial pneumonia, and childhood whooping cough. They improve expectoration, liquefaction, and elimination of secretions and have a bactericidal effect. 

Aniseed oil is used to relieve expectoration from upper respiratory tract catarrhs and bronchitis, 2 to 3 drops on a piece of sugar 2-3 times a day. 

In the pharmaceutical industry, the oil is used to produce syrups, pastilles, medicinal teas, and aromatic water. 

Uses for spices 

The fruits of the Aniseed gooseberry have an intense, light, refreshing aromatic scent and a fragrant, fragrant, sweetish taste. The aromatic fruit, which stimulates digestion and removes gas, has also been used successfully in the kitchen. Ground fruit is used for seasoning. They are used to flavor various cakes, biscuits, muffins, pancakes, and even fans. They are particularly suitable for Christmas baked goods. Aniseed is used to flavor dairy and fruit soups, oatmeal porridge, sweet rice dishes, puddings, fruit salads, creams, and cakes. Suitable for punch and tea. Its seeds give a distinctive flavor to beetroot, red cabbage, cucumbers and carrots, and a variety of fruits. Potatoes, especially apples, plums, and pears. Seeds of aniseed gooseberry are present in fish seasoning mixes, which give fish a fragrant aroma, improve the taste and protect against ‘rusting’. They are also used in the fermentation of cucumbers and cabbages. 

Aniseed is used in a variety of sweets, liqueurs, and many aniseed vodkas. 

The fruit loses its aroma quickly when ground. It is therefore advisable to grind the seeds just before consumption. Unground seeds are aromatic for one year. Aniseed goes well with ginger, cloves, nutmeg, vanilla (for sweet dishes); with nutmeg, black pepper, cloves, ginger (for savory dishes).

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