This stunning rainforest tree is both highly ornamental and a very desirable for its bushfood characteristics. It’s quite rare in the wild, native to a few areas of North East New South Wales. The tree can reach up to 45 metres in a rainforest environment but most often 8-10 metres as a small to medium tree in open garden situations. It’s usually harvested as a hedge to 2-3 metres in bushfood plantations. The plant has a dense cover of fine lush green foliage throughout the year with white scented flowers in the spring.
It has strong aniseed scented and flavoured leaves which are often used for flavouring desserts, sweet sauces and preserves. Made from the crushed leaves of Aniseed Myrtle it has a subtle sweet liquorice flavour.
To me this native herb is full of surprises. I love opening the bag when I need to pack it for an order and that wonderful licorice smell fills the room. It brings back childhood memories of eating licorice and those yummy Choo Choo bars that lasted for ever.
Great with fish or pork, steamed rice, seafood, biscuits, ice-cream or tea. It is also popular used in savoury sauces or marinades for meats and sets a deep fragrant flavour to salad dressings. Aniseed Myrtle always adds a special and unique flavour to any dish. Try it with prawns, it doesn’t have to overwhelm, the flavour of this herb, strong though it is, can be added “gently” , be subtle with it’s use, it won’t disappoint.
Other Ideas for using Aniseed Myrtle
Aniseed Myrtle & Macadamia Biscuits
Aniseed Myrtle Biscotti
Can also be used in a Chicken Casserole in hommus & Sweet Potatoe dips.
Experiment by adding it your your favorite recipe that advises to use Fennel or Star of Anise.
Traditionally used for weight loss, lactation and stomach complaints