STAR ANISE



Star anise is rich in antioxidants & vitamin A & C, which help fight free radicals that are responsible for early aging & diabetes.
Star anise contains calcium, potassium, iron & magnesium.
The other active compounds & organic acids, such as shikimic acid, fats & dietary fiber, also provide star anise with a few extra health benefits.
Star anise essential oil contains antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, anodyne, antispasmodic, expectorants, aromatic, diuretic, stimulant, as well as diaphoretic properties.

Star anise tea after meals helps treat digestive ailments such as bloating, gas & constipation.
Star anise tea can also be prepared & used to relieve indigestion while stimulating appetite.
Star anise also helps treat heartburn through neutralizing the acid.

Mild decoctions & very weak infusions can be employed to treat bloatinggascolic & diarrhea.

Star anise can be used to treat rheumatism as a tea prepared from grounded seeds.

Star anise has powerful anti-fungal properties & has been a trusted natural remedy for a huge host of fungal infections, including Athlete’s foot, ringwormCandida & other common strains.

Star anise promotes healthy skinprevents fungal infections, supports respiratory health, lowers your risk of cancer, stimulates the immune systemoptimizes digestionboosts circulation aids sleep.

It also helps drain excess mucus when one has a cold & mucus from the alimentary canal, which may cause stomach upset.
Other star anise tea benefits include relieving lung swelling or inflammation, bronchitis, bird flu & swine flu.
If you have a cough or sore throat, or feel the early stirrings of the flu, a cup of anise tea may be able to sort out the inflammation rapidly & neutralize the underlying infection before more serious symptoms arise.

Star anise tea may be employed as a remedy for various feminine complaints such as dysmenorreahmenstrual cramps & delayed or irregular menses.
Star anise tea can be used by women to promote menstruation, easing childbirth & for increasing production & flow of breast milk.
Men can use star anise tea to increase libido & to relieve symptoms of male menopause.
For male libido men should drink crushed seeds mixed in a glass of water.

Star anise tea vitalizes body organs & glands such as the brain, liver, lungs & the heart.

Other star anise tea health benefits include treating nausea, bad breath & disorders of the nerves, epilepsy & emphysema.

Throw a handful of aniseeds onto glowing coals. Inhaling the smoke through the nose will ease a tension headache.

PRECAUTIONS:

Be careful you know what you are taking. The star anise used as medicine is Chinese star anise. Don’t confuse it with Japanese star anise, which is poisonous & should not be taken. Some Chinese star anise tea products have been contaminated with Japanese star anise. You cannot tell the difference between them just by looking. Unless safety can be assured, star anise tea should not be used.
If you start feeling irritated, nausea & even start vomiting & having seizures, stop taking the tea immediately, because it has most likely been contaminated. See your doctor at once & throw away your tea.

Star anise is safe when used as a cooking ingredient. However, it may cause skin reaction such as mild itching or a rash, swelling, blisters & scaling when applied on the skin & mild to severe gastrointestinal distress & inflammation when consumed.

Pregnant women, breastfeeding women & children should not use star anise without the doctor’s approval.

People with hormone-sensitive conditions such as uterine cancer & uterine fibroid, endometriosis, ovarian cancer & breast cancer should not use star anise because it contains estrogen-like compounds that may accelerate these conditions.


RECIPES:

When cooking with star anise, use only a small amount of the spice. It has a very strong flavor & too much of it in a dish will be overwhelming & might make your meal bitter.

The spice is used in meat & poultry dishes as well as confections.
Use it in soups, stews & casseroles that require long cooking.

Put it in the pan when making roast chicken & duck.
Make a rub for poultry or game by combining 2 ground star anise with
1 tbsp of sugar, 1 tsp black mustard seeds, 10 black peppercorns & 1 tsp of salt.
It makes about ¼ cup, enough for a whole bird.

Star anise is one of the main ingredients in the traditional Chinese seasoning, five spice.
The sweet scent is a perfect pairing with rich duck & pork dishes.
In Vietnamese cooking, it is a main seasoning for the “pho” broth.
Western uses are generally confined to preserves & anise flavored liqueurs, such as anisette.
Star anise is also used in many curry concoctions, for both its flavor & scent.
Star anise is 10 times sweeter than sugar due to the presence of the compound anethole. The flavor is compared to licorice with a hint of cinnamon & clove. As such, it is used in breads & cakes.
A traditional Czechoslovakian bread, vanocka, was made around Easter & Christmas.

To make a tea you can use either leaves or the seeds of the Chinese star anise plant.
Pour boiling water into your teapot.
Place 1-2 whole seed pods per cup of water inside the teapot & let it steep for 10- 15 minutes.
Strain & sweeten with honey.

Rooibos & Nettle Chai:

2 tsp Cardamon seeds or 2 crushed cardamon pods
1/2 tsp whole peppercorns
1/2 tsp cloves
2 cm piece of fresh ginger, sliced
1 star anise
1-2 cinnamon sticks
1/4 tsp chili powder or 1 small whole dried chile
1/2 cup dried nettle
1/3 cup raspberry leaf
1/4 cup rooibos tea
coconut sugar to taste
Bring 6 cups water to a boil with the spices.
Cover & simmer for 10-20 minutes, depending on how spicy you like your chai.
Add nettle, raspberry leaf & rooibos.
Remove from heat & steep covered for 15 minutes.
Strain.
Transfer your chai infusion to a glass jar & store in the fridge for up to a week.
To drink, combine 3 parts chai with 2 parts milk or whatever proportions your palate dictates.
Warm & sweeten with coconut sugar to taste.

Star Anise Hot Chocolate:

1/2 cup whole milk
1/4 cup heavy cream
3 star anise pods
1/4 tsp anise seed
200 g good-quality milk chocolate, coarsely chopped
Combine milk, cream, star anise & anise seed in a small saucepan over medium heat & heat until simmering.
Turn heat off, cover the saucepan & let anise steep for 10 minutes.
Strain milk mixture into another small saucepan to remove anise.
Return milk to medium heat, add chocolate & whisk until completely melted & well incorporated. Serve immediately.

BEAUTY:

Star anise oil is applied topically as a remedy for head lice & acne.

Star anise can help minimize the appearance of wrinkles, boost skin elasticity & cover up old scars & blemishes to keep your skin looking young & vibrant.

MAGIC:

Star anise stops misfortunes, increases psychic power, brings back a lost love, increases good luck.
Anise seeds could ward off the evil eye by being burned or strewn around the home.
Star anise is associated with protection, increased psychic awareness, divination & lust.
It is a powerful psychic herb & can increase visions, ward off nightmares, cleanse bad juju & clear a negative space. 
The tree is planted around temples & on graves as an herb of consecration & protection.

The powdered bark is used as incense.
The seeds are burned as incense to increase psychic powers & are also worn as beads.
It is also carried as a general luck-bringer & the seeds make excellent pendulums.

Star anise is a popular herb in hoodoo & can cast off the well-known ‘evil eye’ curse.
You can use Star anise to help during dream time by placing it in a magic bag under your pillow. Other herbs that it works well is flax seeds for lunar energy & vervain for psychic awareness.

The seeds are burned to increase psychic powers.

Tisanes made of star anise may be drunk as an aphrodisiac or as an enhancer to one's inherent psychic abilities, while incense of star anise may be employed during invocation rituals & during astral travels to protect & increase the magician's inherent abilities.