Plant species belonging to the umbelliferae family (lat. Pimpinella anisum). The fruits of the plant are also called aniseed. The name may be derived from the Greek "ānison" or "ānemos" (fragrance). The typical aroma of sweet caraway is caused by anethole, which is the main component of the essential oil (90%). Today, this is extracted from the fruit by distillation. Aniseed was already used in ancient times as a remedy (flatulence, digestive complaints) and as a spice to flavour bread and baked goods as well as desserts. The Greek philosopher and mathematician Pythagoras of Samos (~570-510 BC) described bread flavoured with aniseed as a delicious delicacy.
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