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How to cook with star anise

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Feeling a touch adventurous? Then why not try cooking with an ingredient that’s loaded with flavour — one that you might not be so comfortable using?

Star anise, a star-shaped seed pod that’s traditionally grown in various Asian countries, is typically used to enhance the taste of a dish or dessert. It adds a strong, licorice flavour — perfect in teas, cakes, stews and curries.

To prepare it, you can do one of two things: grind it up with a mortar and pestle before sprinkling it into your food, or just toss the whole thing in for maximum licorice flavour.

One word of warning though: as is true with black licorice, you’re either going to love or hate the taste of this ingredient. But if it’s in a dish with other flavours and spices, it can balance the taste nicely.

Looking for a summer-friendly dessert to make with star anise? Then these refreshing poached pears with star anise and wine are calling your name.

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