Fennel – a strong, reaching 2 m in height biennial or perennial plant umbrella. Originates from southern Europe, from the Mediterranean Sea area and Asia Minor. The ancient Romans, Egyptians, Greeks, Indians and Chinese have valued him as a spice and medicine. In Central Europe it was in the Middle Ages.
Fennel leaves pinnately dissected into multiple line segments. Fragrant yellow flowers clustered in umbels. Fennel is very similar to caraway meadow. Fruit – aromatic dvusemyanki, oblong, oval, up to 8 mm.
Currently, fennel is cultivated by direct seeding in gardens and in the field, not only in Central Europe and the Mediterranean region, but also in North and South America, China, eastern India and the USSR. Fennel planted in fertile, well-treated, not too moist soils with sufficient limestone, warm and bright areas. In Slovakia and Moravia, it is cultivated for fruit (Fructus foeniculi). Gather the mature umbrellas, which, after drying at 35 ° C threshed.
The chemical composition.
Fruits contain 2-6% essential oil (Oleum foeniculi aetherum), 9-12% fatty oil, proteins, sugars, etc. The characteristic odor of anethole and fenchone called.
Fennel has an expectorant and disinfectant action. Used for flatulence and to improve the production of milk in nursing mothers. In folk medicine fennel is used as a tea decoction with abdominal pain, cough and insomnia.
Fennel has a spicy, sweet aroma, reminiscent of the smell of anise. Its taste is sweet and slightly spicy. The fruits are used to make flavored water, flavored alcohol syrups and medicinal teas. By distillation of them are fragrant essential oil.
In a spice used in the manufacture of liquors, confectionery, mainly cookies, pies and puddings. By law, popular in the cooking of fish, especially carp, mayonnaise, soups, sauces, and on a smaller scale and compotes. It gives a nice flavor sauerkraut, pickled cucumbers and cold dishes. New shoots and leaves, and immature umbels make more subtle flavor marinades to salads, they are used in canning cucumbers, vegetables and sauerkraut.