Aromatic plant of the Umbelliferae family (so-called because the flowers are grouped like an "umbrella"). The edible part of anise is made up of small green-yellow fruits (they look like seeds). The characteristic aroma (very similar to fennel) is given by an essential oil, anethole, contained in the fruit. Anise is widely used in pastry to flavor cakes, sweets, and biscuits. Sometimes, it is used in small doses and savory preparations, for example, for soups. There are also several liqueurs based on anise: anisette, Pastis and sambuca. Anise seeds keep for a long time, as long as they are stored in hermetically sealed jars.