(Pimpinella anisum) Anise is in the same family of plants as carrots, caraway, coriander, dill, fennel, and more. It has a distinctive flavor similar to licorice. This flavor makes it particularly useful for culinary dishes (such as cakes, cookies, breads, pickling, and more). It also has been used as an aid in digestion and as a breath sweetener.
From the fruit of the Apple tree, Apples have a multitude of uses in culinary recipes. They're delicious eaten alone or a fantastic ingredient in scones, cookies, pies, tarts, cakes, sauces and many savory dishes.
Blueberries are the fruit of the species Vaccinium, a perennial plant mainly native to North America. Used for their anti-oxidant properties and nutritive properties, blueberries are a staple in many kitchens for use in muffins, pies, jams and jellies. (Click on the picture to see more information)
Buddha Ama-cha is an herbal tisane whose leaves come from the Hydrangea Macrophylla var. Amagiana plant. These large, well-formed, gray-green leaves have a very sweet and refreshing taste. The freshly plucked leaves contain so called glucosides which do not have a sweet taste yet. The characteristic sweet taste arises during the fermentation process where the substance "glucoside" is changed into "phyllodulcin".
(Theobroma cacao) (a.k.a Cocoa) Native to South America, cacao is now primarily cultivated in West Africa. Nibs are the result of cacao beans after they have been roasted, cracked and de-shelled. Used in cooking and for snacking, they are usually ground into a thick paste (chocolate liquor). Cacao nibs are high in flavonoids and antioxidants and are a good source of vitamins and minerals.
Coconut is the fruit from a large palm tree that is grown throughout the tropics. High in saturated fat, coconuts are also low in sugar and high in minerals. Dried, grated coconut can be used in a variety of culinary recipes. It can be eaten alone or sprinkled over cereal or fruit and is a tasty addition to granola, curries, vegetable dishes, salads, baked goods, and smoothies.
(Vaccinium oxycoccos) Cranberries are the fruit of an evergreen shrub that thrives in the cooler temperature of the northern hemisphere. They have a tartness that makes them a perfect addition to both sweet and savory dishes. (Click on the picture to see more information)