Star anise, also known as big fennel, commonly known as aniseed, is the fruit of the Magnoliaceae plant star anise. It is as big as money and splits into eight petals, so the name star anise is also a common condiment in the family. According to measurement, it contains more volatile oil, the main component is anisole, accounting for about 80% to 90%, and a small amount of anisaldehyde, anisaldehyde, anisinone, pinene, phellandrene, limonene and other ingredients. Some illegal vendors in the market pretend to be star anise with the fruit of Mangcao. Ingestion will cause serious consequences, so you must carefully distinguish the authenticity when using it.
The real star anise is composed of 8 follicles arranged radially on the central axis in a star shape. The top is blunt and straight, the upper edge is cracked, and there is a short hook-shaped curved stalk; the seeds are flat ovoid and seeded. The skin is reddish-brown or yellowish-brown; the smell is strong, the taste is a bit spicy at first, and then sweet.
The fake mangcao is composed of 10 to 13 follicles arranged on the central axis, with a long and backward-curved hook-shaped stalk at the apex; although the seeds are also flat ovoid, the seed coat is yellow-brown, smelling The aroma is not strong, the taste is first sour and then sweet, without the feeling of pungent taste.