Botanical Name -
Indian Name - Velaiti saunf
Other names: وزانیسواں Anisuan (Urdu), Anice verde(Italian), Anis (German), Boucage (French), Anison (Greek)
Orange Muffins with Almond Recipe
Anise is an annual culinary herb belonging to 'ajwain' or celery family. Its fruit, known as aniseed, is one of the oldest spices. The seed is ground-grey to greyish-brown in colour, oval in shape and 3.2 to 4.8 mm in length. It requires sunshine and warmth and does not grow satisfactorily in the tropical lowlands. Aniseed is a native of the Middle East. It was cultivated by ancient Egyptians, who valued its medicinal properties and culinary uses. Anise oil is a colourless or pale-yellow liquid, with the characteristic odour and taste of the fruit.
Aniseed is esteemed in medicine for its properties to relieve flatulence and to remove catarrhal and phlegm from the bronchial tube. These properties are due to the presence of the essential oil. The seed also copious perspiration and increases the volume and discharge of urine.
Note: It's important for the butter and eggs to be at room temperature.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit with rack on the middle position. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with muffin liners (or spray with non-stick coating).
In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cardamom, and anise. In a separate measuring cup, combine the milk and butter milk and set aside.
In the bowl of a stand-mixer or using an electric hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Add the lemon zest to the butter-sugar mixture and mix until just combined. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition until just combined and no trace of yolk is visible.
With the mixer on low, pour in one-third of the milk mixture and then one-third of the dry ingredients. Continue to alternate between the milk and dry ingredients until all ingredients are incorporated. Your dough should look pale yellow and shaggy.
Divide the batter between the twelve cups and bake until the muffins are firm to the touch and a cake-tester inserted into the center muffin comes out clean--about 25-30 minutes.
The muffins are wonderful on their own, but you can also brush the tops with melted butter and press them into confectioner's sugar for an added treat.