Thursday, October 27, 2011

A Sweet Story.....

The unique French charm
of these pretty oval tins depict each chapter
of a beautiful love story!

"It all started one spring morning in the secret garden of a young maiden.  Surrounded by the scent of roses, she dreamed of being loved.  Outside the village, a light shining in a window kindled something deep in the heart of the solitary shepherd as he sat and chewed his liquorice stick.  And then they met amonsgst the mint leaves by the cool water of the spring...Together at last, they sat under the orange blossoms and looked peacefully towards the future.  Finally on day by the fountain the shepherd offered a tiny delicious Anis de Flavigny to his beloved.  Will she accept? ....And what comes next belongs only to them discreetly hidden behind a screen of violets."

Let us introduce you to our Anis de Flavigny mints!  Everyone loves them...but many do not know the story behind these delilcious confections!

This photo shows the stages of the confits (taken from the Anis de Flavigny website)

Since 1591, the ancient Abbey of Flavigny has been dedicated to the creation of Anis de Flavigny mints.  At the heart of each mint is a tiny aniseed, coated over 15 days with fine layers of sugar and smooth, all-natural flavors.  Always faithful to the original recipe, since the departure of the monks, a team of 25 people has lovingly continued the production of these refereshing drops form the hillsides of Burgundy. 

In the 17th century, the recipe consisted of coating an aniseed with sugar, then flavoring it with orange blossom water. Back then, it took six months to make one candy because of the hand coating and drying. Today only 15 days are required to produce the same candy.

These candies are a wonderful delicacy to have on hand throughout the day. 
These comfits are also a great addition to a hot cup of tea.
Just swirl a pastille into the hot brew for a distinctive treat!

Does the town Flavigny seem familiar to you?
 The movie Chocolat
was shot on location there....

These little seeds, may not contain chocolat...but these
Anis de Flavigny mints
are famous!

We've found the recipe for the candies them, so you can give it a try at home....

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutesIngredients:

•1/3 cup anise seeds
•1/4 cup water
•1 tablespoon orange flower essence
•1 cup granulated sugar

Place the anise seeds in a large mixing bowl and set aside.

Bring the water, orange flower water, and sugar to a simmer in a medium saucepan until the mixture reaches the soft-ball stage at 235-240F. Transfer the saucepan to a hot plate or warmer to keep the syrup warm.

Drizzle one tablespoon of the sugar syrup over the anise seeds and stir for 3 to 4 minutes, until the syrup evenly coats and sets on each seed and the seeds separate again. Continue this process, stirring constantly, 1 tablespoon of syrup at a time, until all the syrup is used and the anise seeds have separated into individual pastilles. This process can take up to 30 minutes to complete. Alternately, use an automatic candy-coating drum to speed up the process.

Spread the anis pastilles in a single layer on a parchment lined baking sheet. Allow them to cure, uncovered, for 5 days. Store the finished candy in an airtight container and enjoy!

This anis de Flavigny recipe makes approximately 1 1/4 cups finished pastilles.

Of course....
you can just come to the store and purchase a tin :)

More recipes using Anis de Flavigny mints can be found here.


Sherri said...

OOLaLa girls!!

nana_ang_poppaphil said...

Very nice ladies, the story is wonderful, and they look delish.

Cassie said...

At first I saw "5 min", then the coating process...which scared me off! I'll stick to purchasing the pastils. (Made altoids mints last winter...I think my last try at candy making. Not near as good as the real thing!)

manyslices said...

What an interesting historical culinary tidbit. There is something about making something, by hand, the old fashioned way. I started canning this summer, and into the fall and really love it.
Have a great weekend Kitchen Girls,

Savorique said...

Anis de Flavigny has indeed a great packaging that renders a nice homage to its heritage and uses very high quality ingredients, some organic. No wonder why the company has grown fast in the recent years, they are now sold in more than 300 stores in China!
We are proud to carry this brand in our store.

Joan said...

Love the old tins of candy. Just the look of them makes the candy taste better. LOL


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