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Star anise is a spice made from the fruit of the Chinese evergreen tree Illicium verum.
Star anise is the seed pod from the fruit of the Illicium verum plant, an evergreen shrub native to Southwest China. Although this star-shaped pod has a similar flavor and name to Spanish anise, the two plants are unrelated. A compound called anethole is responsible for the licorice-like flavor of both plants.
The star anise pod, which is shaped like a star (hence its name), has six to eight points, each containing a single seed. Both the seeds and the pod contain the sweet, potent anise flavor. Before it is used as a spice, it is dried, turning it a deep brown or rust color.
It is important not to confuse star anise with the Japanese star anise, Illicium anistatum, which is highly toxic and must not be consumed. It is often burned as incense.
Star anise is a spice made from the fruit of the Chinese evergreen tree Illicium verum. It’s aptly named for the star-shaped pods from which the spice seeds are harvested and has a flavor that is reminiscent of licorice. Because of similarities in their flavor and names, star anise is often confused with anise, but the two spices are unrelated. Star anise is famed not only for its distinct flavor and culinary applications but also for its medicinal benefits.
Star anise, commonly called star anise, star aniseed, or Chinese star. Anise is a spice obtained from the star-shaped pericarp of Illicium verum, a medium-sized native evergreen tree of northeast Vietnam and southwest China. The star-shaped fruits are harvested just before ripening. Star anise oil is a highly fragrant oil using in cooking, perfumery, soaps, toothpastes, mouthwashes, and skin creams
Exotic anise spice contains some of the important plants derived chemical compounds. that are known to have been anti-oxidant, disease preventing, and health promoting properties.
The chief component that gives the characteristic sweet, aromatic flavor to anise is anethole, the essential volatile oil present in the seeds. Other important compounds found in these seeds includeestragol, p-anisaldehyde, anise alcohol, acetophenone, pinene and limonene.
The seeds are an excellent source of many essential B-complex vitamins such as pyridoxine, niacin, riboflavin, and thiamin. Pyridoxine (vitamin B-6) helps increase GABA neuro-chemical levels in the brain.
Why star anise?
The spicy seeds are the great source of minerals like calcium, iron, copper, potassium, manganese, zinc and magnesium. 100 g dry seeds contain 36.96 mg or 462% daily required levels of iron. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps control heart rate and blood pressure. Copper is a cofactor for many vital enzymes, including cytochrome C-oxidase and superoxide dismutase.
The spice also contains good amounts of anti-oxidant vitamins such as vitamin-C and vitamin-A.
Illicium verum is a medium-sized evergreen tree native to northeast Vietnam and southwest China. A spice commonly called star anise, staranise, star anise seed, Chinese star anise, or badian that closely resembles anise in flavor is obtained from the star-shaped pericarps of the fruit of I. verum which are harvested just before ripening
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