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Aditya Spice Encyclopaedia

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2.Star Anise

Curcuma Longa L.

Botanical Name : Curcuma Longa L.
Commercial part : Rhizome or underground stem.
Calorific value: /100 gms Edible portion 349

Turmeric is an aromatic root or rhizome of a plant. Highly grown in India and West Indies. It is a handsome perennial with large lily like leaves and yellow flowers. It is been cultivated in India for over 2000 years and now is grown in all Tropical regions, of the world. It is thought to be one of ancient Persian yellow spices, which were associated with sun worship.
It adds a warm, mild aroma and distinctive yellow colour to foods. It is used in curry powders not only for imparting colour and flavour to the curries, but also because of its preservative quantities. Turmeric is used as a mild digestive and a remedy for liver ailments. It is used freely in Indian medicines. Plasters of it are applied in cases buries, as a dry dressing on open wounds, and as a face pack for its antiseptic properties.
Although lacking in the exquisitely aromatic flavour of saffron. Turmeric can be used as a substitute and the spice is also called "Indian Saffron". The brilliant golden yellow colour, which has long been exploited for dye make purpose.
         Turmeric is exported in whole, in powder form and as oleoresin with rich ciramin contents and other inherent qualities. Indian turmeric is considered the best in the world. Today India is the largest exporter of turmeric to countries like Middle East, the UK, USA, and Japan.

Illicium verum.

Botanical Name : Illicium verum.

Star Anise, One of the few spices used mainly in Chinese cookery and sparingly in Indian cookery. Star anise is native to southern china and Vietnam.
A very pretty spice and is the fruit of a small evergreen tree of the magnolia family. The shape of ripe star anise is that of an irregular, eight-pointed star. When dried, star anise is hard and reddish brown. Each point of the star contains a glossy, brittle, brown, seed, but are less aromatic than the rest of the fruit. Although not related to anise and fennel, star anise has a similar smell and taste. It is more pungently liquorices-like and has a distinct sweet note.
The essential oil contains anelhole, the principle aromatic constituent also found in anise. It flavours liquors such as pasties and anisette and is also used in chewing gum and confectionery. The spice is chewed whole to sweeten the breath. The essential oil is used in soap making and in perfumery.

Fennel, ancient Indians used fennel as a condiment and culinary spice. The dried ripe fruit of aromatic, herbaceous plant, fennel grows well in most mild climates. The seeds are green to yellow-brown in colour. The size is about 5-10 mm long, oblong, elliptical, straight or slightly curved, with prominent lighter ridges. They sometimes have a short pieces of stalk attached.
The whole plant is aromatic and the seeds smell like anise. The taste is warm, and fragrant out not as sweet, with a slight note of camphor. Fennel was an important medical plant in the past. It was also believed to help cure stomach complaints and toothache. The seeds contain a high proportion and anethole, which is used in making pastis and other anise-based drinks.
The pleasingly warm, sweet smell and the clean appearance are clear indications of how well Indian fennel retains its exclusive quality even-after drying. Well known as "saunf", Indian fennel is used in food medicine, liquor and perfume.
India exports substantial quantities of Fennel to USA, Singapore, UK, UAE, SriLanka, Suadi Arabia, and Japan in a variety of forms including seed, powder and volatile oils.

Foeniculam Vulgare Miller

Botanical Name: Foeniculam Vulgare Miller
Family Name: Apiaceae
Commercial part: Fruit



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