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Random Sunday :- Jintan Manis - Is it Fennel or Aniseed???

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Now.... when I was blogging about my confinement (here and here), fennel seeds were used in some recipes because fennel is a galactagogue (aids in lactating). I was asked, whether it is jintan manis or jintan kasar in the Malay Language. Or is the jintan manis not fennel or it's aniseed. So many being confused. I myself, although am convinced that fennel is jintan manis, but am no sure what are those on my spice rack.

Ok, to solve the mystery, I planted some Jintan Manis that I took off my spice rack. Why did I plant it?
Simply because Aniseed and Fennel flowers differently. The way you can really find out is to look at the flowers and leaves. See it with out very own eyes.


Remember this picture from My Garden post?


Anise:-
Flowers-white
Seed name: aniseed
Chinese name - 茴芹 (Read here for Chinese)

Fennel:-
Flowers-yellow
Seed name : Fennel seeds
Chinese name- 小茴香 (Read here for Chinese)

So, after you see my flowers, what do you think Jintan Manis is???







You all may be thinking, woweee.. can plant fennel means can reap the bulbs and cook. Nah! This variety that we have doesn't bulb. I read that only the Florence variety bulbs. Yikes, such an anti climax. But the leaves can be eaten, like the way one uses dill. I've seen some mainland Chinese blogs using this to make omelette, yes fennel frond omelette.



Mystery Solved!
Phew!

and I reaped a lot of organic fennel seeds from just a few sown.
:)


17 lovely notes:

Mel February 19, 2012 at 10:39 AM  

Good to plant some herbs and spice from the garden.

Marina February 19, 2012 at 11:34 AM  

Photos are very nice. I was working in my garden today too. I don't have fennel but dill is coming out very good. I need to try fennel too. Thanks for the idea.

Sharon @ Feats of Feasts February 19, 2012 at 11:57 AM  

Haha, i remember when you first posted about this, how it has grown and the way they sprout seeds like that, it looks pretty cool. :) Did they turn brown after that or you dried it out in the sun?

wendyywy @ Table for 2..... or more February 19, 2012 at 12:06 PM  

Mel,
that was for an experiment :p


“追食富迪”,
thanks to photo editing :p


Marina,
I don't have dill here :(
But they can't be planted together I read, the fennel seeds goes tasteless when they interbreed.



Sharon,
They turned brown while still on the stalk.
The seed pictures were taken right after I collected them. I wanted to give them to you all that day, but I found some mealy bugs on some of them, thanks to my ants!

mr. pineapple man February 19, 2012 at 12:17 PM  

so this is what they look like! Thank you for educating me :)

HomeKreation February 19, 2012 at 1:07 PM  

Never know you can simply plant from the seeds we bought for cooking.... interesting! Anyway, lazy me will just buy from the shop....hehehe

busygran February 19, 2012 at 8:08 PM  

How I wished I had a garden like before!
I love the colours of the spice plants!

lena February 19, 2012 at 8:32 PM  

till today, i'm still confused myself between jintan manis and jintan putih. if you never tell this is jintan manis, i probably hv thought this could also be jintan putih.

Anonymous,  February 19, 2012 at 8:41 PM  

Hi, i'm browsing thr your past confinement notes and it looks so amazing! Can I request for the confinement lady contact? ;)

With thanks.
lil mama

Little Inbox February 19, 2012 at 9:08 PM  

Watched a Taiwan cooking show, the chef stir-fry egg with prawns and fennel, but she said not all people like its taste. I have no idea how it smells like.

wendyywy @ Table for 2..... or more February 19, 2012 at 9:48 PM  

mr pineapple man,
Yeah this is how fennel seeds look like


Homekreation,
Can plant, but the purpose of this was just to determine whether our jintan manis is aniseed or fennel seed


busygran
I planted these in pots, u can too!


lena,
Same here. But then, after a while u'll be able to remember that jintan putih is actually dark and jintan manis is fairer, LOL. Opposite la.


lil mama,
email me


Little Inbox,
U mean fennel bulbs or fennel fronds?
Fennel bulbs taste almost like celery, but tougher.
Fronds.. like dill :)

Hody Loh February 20, 2012 at 10:37 AM  

my fennel dead liao.....the flowers look very pretty...see your fennel make me want to plan again.

Anonymous,  February 20, 2012 at 2:08 PM  

Hi I sent an email to u yesterday.

lil mama

Anonymous,  February 22, 2012 at 10:19 AM  

Great post, and so helpful for women wanting to increase their milk supply. One of the reasons for the confusion is that in the Malay language, both fennel and aniseed are called "jintan manis", that's why so many mistakenly think that aniseed is fennel and vice versa, when in fact, anise seed is not used as often as fennel in south east asian cooking. Much easier to just call fennel "jintan kasar" since it is bigger than anise seed or even cumin for that matter.

wendyywy @ Table for 2..... or more February 22, 2012 at 11:35 AM  

Anonymous,
Actually I have never heard of Jintan Kasar, except through my reader.

Emy,  April 20, 2013 at 6:35 PM  

In Malay it is called Pokok Adas which i have never heard before ;) only when they dried the seeds we call it Jintan Manis.

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