The name “anise” is derived via Old French from the Latin word, anisum, or Greek, anison, referring to dill. Anisee is a flowering plant in the family Apiaceae native to the eastern Mediterranean region and Southwest Asia. Its flavor has similarities with some other spices, such as star anise, fennel, and liquorice.
- Herbaceous annual plant growing to 3 ft (0.9 m) or taller.
- White or yellow flowers, approximately 1⁄8 inch (3 mm) in diameter, are produced in dense umbels.
- The fruit is an oblong dry schizocarp, 1⁄8–1⁄4 in (3–6 mm) long.
Aniseed is widely cultivated and used to flavor food and alcoholic drinks. The main uses are for:
- Culinary for its sweet and very aromatic flavour.
- Liquor used with other herbs and spices in some root beers.
- Traditional medicine for carminative effect (reducing flatulence), a cure for sleeplessness, freshen breath, and a remedy for asp bites.
- Made into a liquid scent and used for drag hunting and fishing.