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Friday, December 7, 2018

Star of Anise Can Help Make the Home Smell Like Christmas

Christmas seems to bring out the scents of the spice world. One spice used commonly is star anise and is used in both culinary and medicinal factors. Used for thousands of years star anise is rich in vitamin C, calcium and iron.

Star anise contains anethole which offers the spice its flavor. Star anise is used commonly in the west as a less expensive substitute for anise. Anise is a common spice used in baking, liquor production, and enhancing the flavor of meat. The countries of China, India and several Asian related countries use the flavors of anise in daily cooking. With a flavor similar to licorice and cloves star anise is often used to enhance both sweet and savory dishes.

Star anise contains potent anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. It has been found to be good for treating the flu. The shikimic acid inside star anise is used to make a common anti-viral drug that fights the flu known as Tamiflu. Star anise helps remove mucus and congestion due to its expectorant properties. Other health areas star anise has been found to be helpful in are:
relieve gas                                   
  • constipation                                     asthma
  • cramping                                          bronchitis
  • bloating                                            rheumatism
  • heartburn                                          back pain
  • indigestion                                        shingles
  • halitosis                                            herpes
  • sinus infections                                 sedative
  • health of female reproductive system
  • lactating moms
.Star anise oil can be found in creams and lotions to be used to treat insect bites, eczema, psoriasis, acne, scabies and lice. Star anise can be located in whole, powder, capsule, tea, extract oil and cream. Look for it at the grocery store.

Potpourri Mix To Make the House Smell Like Christmas

1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries
3 tangerines halved
3 whole cinnamon sticks
2 star anise gives a strong black licorice smell. optional
1 teaspoon whole cloves
1 inch piece fresh ginger
1 tablespoon vanilla bean + 1 vanilla extract
1 small branch fresh pine
1 cup apple cider pomegranate or cranberry juice

Combine all the ingredients in a medium size sauce pot. Fill the pot with water until it reaches 3/4 the way full. Place the pot on the stove and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, adding more water as needed. I let mine simmer for close to 4 hours and then let it cool over night and simmer again the next day. Just be sure to keep adding more water.

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