Licorice is derived from the sweet root of several species of Glycyrrhiza, native in warmer
climates around the world. As far as we can ascertain, the first recorded use of the root of
the licorice plant began in the third Century B.C. in Greece. The root was commonly used for
medicinal purposes in Europe during the Middle Ages and is discussed in a list of drugs in
Frankfort, Germany in 1450.
Although licorice is still used today in medicines, those of us at Licorice Man! have no medical
degrees and cannot recommend cures. And yet, our customers and a couple of pharmacists
have verified that it is good for some things that ail you. Most of all. it is yummy and if you love
it, will make you feel happy!
In 1760 in Pontefract, England, licorice was made into a confection by a local chemist, George
Dunhill. Today the production of licorice candy is world wide. It is produced in numerous
varieties and textures, often mixed with mint, salt, menthol, pepper, salmiak and other flavors.
The Netherlands is the most prolific maker of licorice confections.
Erk Sous is a sweet licorice drink sold by street vendors in Syria and Egypt. Made into a tea,
licorice is usually combined with fruit and spices making it a delicious hot drink. Other herbs
and spices with licorice-like flavors are anise, caraway seeds and fennel. Many liqueurs are
made using licorice and/or anise. Among these are German Jagermeister, Greek Ouzo,
French Anisette and Italian Sambucca.
The root of the licorice plant can be chewed in it's natural state. Sweeteners for the candy are
most often molasses, sugar, corn syrup or treacle. Most licorice contains gluten or wheat but
a few varieties are made gluten free. There are also some sugar free varieties.
True licorice is always black although we carry what we call Un-licorice as well. Un-licorice is
the fruit flavored chewy candy made by licorice companies to satisfy the taste buds of those
lacking appreciation for the tasty black treat. Discussions about licorice often creates a bone
of contention among connoisseurs. Many will argue the superiority of salty versus sweet and
hard versus soft. The varieties of licorice and the combinations of licorice with other flavors
are limited only by the imagination of the company producing it.
True licorice lovers are a quirky group and are not prone to purchase licorice "wanna-be's".
We, at Licorice Man! are always on a quest to find the best licorice on the planet! We wonder
if Martians have a favorite? We are certainly not opposed to ordering extraterrestrial if we can
afford the shipping!
We want Licorice, Man!
|a little bit about licorice
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