The taste of badian is related to fennel, licorice and green anise, but it is more sweet and powerful. The seed's pericarp is the most flavoured, but there is no downside to leaving the seeds. It is more easily used whole in infusion but it is possible to crush it with mortar.
Recurrent ingredient in Chinese cuisine, the star anise accompanies white meats, but also perfumes fish and shellfish courts. A star in the cooking water, for example, is a very good seasoner for winkles. It is associated with leek or pumpkin, especially in soup. In the South-West of France, accompanied by a fig leaf, badian is traditionally added to the boiled chestnuts cooking water, which it perfumes pleasantly.
In desserts, badiane gives its warm, aniseed scent to cakes, gingerbread, creams, chocolate mousses and compotes. It is easy to infuse it in milk for this purpose. It also flavors some jams, jellies, marmalades and syrups.
Star anise is used in the making of various drinks such as digestive teas (for the benefit of its carminative and stomachic properties), liqueurs, punch and mulled wine. Kept in the tea box, it imbues it with its essence.