• The Fantastic Spices World
  • The Fantastic Spices World
  • The Fantastic Spices World
  • The Fantastic Spices World

ANISE ( Pimpinella anisum L. )
Names in Other Languages:

English Sweet cumin, Aniseed
French Anis vert, Boucage
German Anis
Spanish Anís, Matalahuga
Italian Anice, Anice verde
Turkish Anason, Enisen, Enison
Japanese アニス Anisu

FAMILY: Apiaceae

ORIGIN:   : Eastern Mediterranean or West Asia. Turkey is still an important producer.

Dried anise fruits (anise seeds)


The seeds of anise are grey-green to brownish, ribbed and ovate, measuring 2 -4 mm long. Some seeds retain the fine stalk that passes through the centre of the fruit. Aniseed consists of two half-fruits (3 - 6 mm long, 2 - 2.5 mm wide and 2 - 12 mm long pedicel) which are separated difficultly.

USEFUL PARTS: Fruits, which are often termed seeds

SENSORY PROPERTIES: Sweet and very aromatic. fragrance.


The aroma of the essential oil (up to 3% in the fruits) is dominated by trans-anethole (max. 90%). Additional aroma components are estragol (iso-anethole, 2%), anise aldehyde (less than 1%), anise alcohol, p-methoxy-acetophenone, pinene, limonene, γ-himachalene (2%). An unusual compound is the phenol ester 4-methoxy-2-(1-propene-yl)-phenol-2-methyl-butyrate, which is characteristic for anise (5%).

The oil content of aniseed is 2.0 - 6.0% essential oils. Anise fruit yields on distillation from 2.5 to 3.5 per cent. of a fragrant, syrupy, volatile oil, of which anethol, present to about 90 per cent., is the principal aromatic constituent. It has a strong Anise odour and separates in the form of shining white crystalline scales on cooling the oil. Other constituents of the fruit are a fixed oil, choline, sugar and mucilage.


Anice is mostly restricted to bread and cakes. Fruits products are also can be aromatised with anise. The seeds of anise can contained in spice mixtures for sausages and stews. The main applications of anise seeds are anise-flavoured liqueurs, which there are many in different Mediterranean countries including rakı in Turkey, ouzo in Greece and pernod in France.

Anise appears occasionally in Mexican recipes

The aromatic seeds are used in cooking, in pot-pourris and in some simple home remedies.

The seeds have been used widely in cooking, and are popular in spicy cakes. The “oil of anise” is often used in artificial licorice, and gives its distinctive taste to liqueurs such as anisette and raki. Anise is used in many processed foods and in cough medicines, and is often included in pet foods for the flavor it imparts.Anise can be used like fresh plant also it can be used ground in culinary. The barks and seeds can be used directly onto the foods, and it can be used for sweetening infusion and enhance the taste of the foods.


Anise is defined for its expectorant and antimicrobial effects. Anise essential oil has a narcotic and sedative effects. It can calm down epileptic and hysteric attacks by slowing down circulation, respiration and nervous response. But this property should be used with caution as heavy dosages can have adverse effects, particularly in children.

The essential oil of anise seed can give relief from rheumatic and arthritic pains by stimulating blood circulation and also by reducing sensation of pain in the affected areas.

It is anti-septic and anti-spasmodic properties. It is carminative and is has cordial effects. It is used to promoto digestion. It has been defined for its expectorant properties as well. it is used as a sedative for anxiety, nervous afflictions, depression, anger, stress etc. and also for symptoms such as insomnia due to its tranquilizing and relaxing effects.

It can kill the worms in the intestines. This property can be particularly beneficial for the children. It can be used to treat colic, flatulence, pectoral affections etc.

Caution: In heavy dosages, it has narcotic effects and slows down respiration and circulation. It is poisonous to certain small animals and birds and therefore children should not be given heavy dosages. Further, it may cause irritation to certain skin types. Better to avoid in pregnancy. This may also aggravate certain types of cancers caused due to estrogen hormone.