Aniseed Myrtle is an Australian bushfood native to New South Wales. The tropical tree can grow up to 45 metres in the wild. It contains a powerful aroma and flavour of aniseed and in summer a bright blossum of extensive fluffy flowers occurs. It was historically used to aid with intestinal cramps and digestive trouble as it contains high levels of the essential oil Anethole.
Aniseed Myrtle contains anti-oxidants, anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties. The essential oil Anethole has been used traditionally to aide with digestion complaints, intestinal cramps, reflux and even colic.
- It is also rich in important nutrients for general well-being such as folate and magnesium.
From a culinary stand point, Aniseed Myrtle is the ultimate Anise flavouring. Use to flavour stews, and curries, it can also be added into baked goods such as gingerbread, or infused into olive oil and drizzled over salad.
Some restaurants use Aniseed Myrtle with salt as a cocktail rim, and incorporate it with some of their best gin flavours.
A rare native shrub endemic to north-eastern NSW and Queensland, Aniseed Myrtle has long been a traditional medicine used by various First Nation communities.
Applied topically on cuts, aniseed myrtle was also a powerful natural flavouring in cooking due to its high anethole content which gives its distinct liquorice aroma and taste.
Rather than just being a sprinkle on the side of the plate, aniseed myrtle has transformed into a key feature of restaurant dishes, cocktail bars and even pastry shops.