Star anise ( Illicium verum ) is a medium-sized evergreen tree native to northeast Vietnam and southwest China. Japanese star anise (Illicium anisatum), a similar tree, is highly toxic and inedible Cases serious neurological effects, such as seizures. After using Illicium anisatum tea severe inflammation of the kidneys (nephritis), urinary tract, and digestive organs when ingested are reported. Star anise oil is a highly fragrant oil used in cooking, Medicines, perfumery, soaps, toothpastes, mouthwashes, and skin creams.
Star Anise is a popular ingredient in many Asian, European and chinese cuisines. Star Anise is used in cooking soup, pho, stews, curries, spice mixes, garam masala, chai, flavoring confections, bread, cakes, rice dishes, rich meat curries, spirits like Absinthe, Sambuca, and Ouzo. Star anise is the major source of the chemical compound shikimic acid, a primary precursor in the pharmaceutical synthesis of the antiinfluenza drug oseltamivir.Star Anise is rich in antioxidants and vitamins A and C, it contain antimicrobial properties that protect from certain bacteria and candida fungus.