Where you can buy:
Papalino Ltd are delighted that two of Calabria’s finest spices are now available at Selfridges Food Hall by Natoora
Black Anise Seeds
Fennel Pollen has become a favourite of chefs and food enthusiasts in recent years. Famed for its wonderful aroma and intense flavour, sprinkling a small amount will enrich the flavour of meat & fish dishes, vegetables, sauces, soups, salads, to name a few.
In the same way that salt & pepper heightens our taste buds, Fennel Pollen's affect is sweeter, warmer. There are notes of liquorice, anise, honey, citrus.
The Fennel Pollens real magic is its high umami properties. This means that it blends with & enriches the ingredients you mix it with.
We recommend a quick search online and you will see the large number of recipes available to you. We recommend a pinch or two, depending on how many you are cooking for, and add the pollen as late as possible to the recipe to maximise the pollens flavour and aroma.
One of the rarest seeds available, they only grow in the Sila mountain region of Calabria. Traditionally, they are used in bread & biscuit recipes at Easter & Christmas.
Our fellow Calabrian and good friend Francesco Mazzei asked us to find these seeds for him. He is a champion of Calabrian cuisine, and has created a number of fantastic recipes using this highly potent spice.
Recipes with crustaceans like lobster and prawn work very well, Cod and pork are also regularly suggested. For cake and dessert ideas, wherever liquorice works, Back Anise Seed can be used. It is also used in Italy as a tea-infusion.
The aroma is a delight to the senses. If you are familiar with regular anise and liquorice, the Black Anise Seeds will deliver a more intense flavour and aroma to your recipes.
Please start with small amounts as this is a potent spice. Start with a pinch, have a taste and go from there.
If you have any questions, you can email us.