What is Licorice?
The licorice plant is a perennial herb and a member of the pea family. Native to southern Europe, Asia, and the Mediterranean, it is extensively cultivated in Russia, Spain, Iran, and India. The plant is prized for its roots, which contain glycyrrhizic acid. This acid, which is extracted from the roots, is fifty times sweeter than sugar. Licorice extract is used as a flavoring in food, tobacco, alcohol, cosmetics, and, of course, in licorice candy.

Licorice Facts
The licorice plant, a shrub, is officially a weed. It is about four feet tall with purplish flowers and grows in hot, dry places. Licorice root is one of the most popular herbs in the world. Its botanical name comes from the Greek words meaning "sweet root." The ancient Greeks, Egyptians, Chinese, and Hindus recognized the natural medicinal qualities of licorice. In the United States, anise seed is a popular substitute flavoring for licorice. Although the anise seed has an unmistakable licorice flavor, it is not related to the European plant whose roots are the source of true licorice. You can find more information about Licorice by browsing the Internet!

A History of Licorice
Licorice is not a recent discovery. The ancient Egyptians used it as a natural remedy and copious supplies were found in King Tut’s tomb. Egyptian hieroglyphics record the use of licorice as a popular beverage among the men of the time. Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar are on record as endorsing the benefits of eating licorice. Modern licorice candy dates from 17th century Holland. At the time, Holland was one of the world’s most powerful countries. Her intrepid sailors spread this wonderful delicacy to other European nations. Today, licorice candy is manufactured throughout Europe, America, and Australia.

Licorice in Food
Black licorice candy can be made from licorice. Here are a few recipes you can use to make licorice ice cream or your own black licorice candies.

Licorice ice cream

-- 6 large egg yolks

-- l-1/2c ups milk

-- l-l/4 cups heavy cream

-- 1/2 cup sugar

-- 10 one inch soft black licorice candies

-- 1 Tbs. Pernod liqueur

-- 1 tsp. vanilla extract

In a large bowl whisk egg yolks. In 1 saucepan combine remaining ingredients, except vanilla, and place over medium high heat. Stir frequently until mixture just comes to a boil. In a steady stream, slowly whisk mixture into beaten egg yolks. Return mixture to pan over medium low heat and cook, stirring constantly, until it registers 120 degrees F on a candy thermometer (do not boil). Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and strain mixture through a fine sieve into a bowl.Discad licorice pieces . Cover and chill in refrigentor. Freeze in an ice cream maker 20-30 minutes until frozen.

Black Licorice candy

Mix the following:

-- 2 c. cane sugar

-- 1 1/2 c. corn syrup

-- 1 cup sweetened condensed milk

-- 1 c. butter

-- dash of salt

Add about 2 to 3 Tbsp. Anise extract hard licorice diluted in same amounl of water. Cook at 232 degrees. Stir constantly. Do not wash sides of pan down. Pour into greased 9 x I 3-inch pan. Cool in refrigerator. Cut into bite sizc pieces and wrap in waxed paper.

You can find more recipes browsing on the Internet

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