Anise is a plant that produces seeds that smell and taste like black licorice. Cookies, vegetables, and liqueurs can all be flavored with anise.

The anise plant produces white flowers and small fruits or seeds. It's the seeds that are used, whole or ground, to flavor various foods — in fact, anise is often referred to as aniseed. Anise itself is an Old English word, from the 13th century Old French anis and ultimately the Greek root anison, which confusingly means both anise and "dill."

Definitions of anise

n native to Egypt but cultivated widely for its aromatic seeds and the oil from them used medicinally and as a flavoring in cookery

Pimpinella anisum, anise plant
Type of:
herb, herbaceous plant
a plant lacking a permanent woody stem; many are flowering garden plants or potherbs; some having medicinal properties; some are pests

n liquorice-flavored seeds, used medicinally and in cooking and liquors

anise seed, aniseed
Type of:
flavorer, flavoring, flavourer, flavouring, seasoner, seasoning
something added to food primarily for the savor it imparts

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