Breast Cancer Awareness
|
|
|
MailTribune.com
  • Since You Asked: Fennel, anise aren't the same

  • Is there a difference between anise and fennel? I use fennel because I can't find anise in local stores.
    • email print
  • Is there a difference between anise and fennel? I use fennel because I can't find anise in local stores.
    — Pam S., Shady Cove
    Fennel and anise have similar, licoricelike flavors. But they are indeed different.
    Florence fennel, the type usually seen in markets, is a root vegetable with a feathery frond. The bulbous root can be sliced and eaten like a vegetable while the frond can be minced and used as a fresh herb. The flavor is similar to anise, but much milder, sweeter and more delicate. Fennel seed, usually dried and used to flavor sausage, comes from a related plant called common fennel. It's widely available in supermarket spice sections.
    Anise is considered a spice. While shoppers rarely encounter the plant, the seed can be found in spice sections of well-stocked supermarkets, particularly in Italian-American communities.
    It's used to flavor a lot of things, such as sweets and beverages common in Mediterranean countries. Sambuca is one anise-flavored Italian liqueur. Try it in this recipe with fennel.
    Mussels In Sambuca
    1/4 cup olive oil
    2 garlic cloves, crushed
    1 leek, white portion only, julienned
    2 pounds mussels, scrubbed
    1 ounce white sambuca
    2 tablespoons chopped fennel
    1 cup clam juice
    1/2 cup heavy cream
    Pinch chili flakes
    In a wide pot over medium-high heat, heat the oil. Add the garlic and leek and saute until aromatic. Stir in the mussels, tossing with oil.
    Add the sambuca, scraping bottom of pot; stir in the fennel, clam juice and cream.
    Cover and steam mussels until they open. Season with the chili flakes and salt and pepper.
    Makes 4 to 6 servings.
Reader Reaction

      calendar