Creamy Garlic and Anise Soup

This is a great do-ahead recipe—refrigerate until ready to reheat and serve.

Serves: 8Hands-on: 20 minutesTotal: 1 hour 30 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 8


  • 14 cloves garlic, peeled and trimmed
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 large bulbs anise (1 lb. each)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1⁄2 tsp. ground white pepper


  • Place garlic and cream in a medium saucepan with a cover and bring to a light boil over medium heat. Lower heat, cover, and gently simmer for 30 to 40 minutes, until the garlic cloves are very soft.
  • Trim and clean anise by cutting off the stalks and wispy sprigs (fronds) from the bulbs and reserve for later use. Cut bulbs in half lengthwise and use a small, sharp knife to trim out the roots. Keep the fronds refrigerated, wrapped in a very moist paper towel. Keep the stalks and bulb portions and discard the root trimmings.
  • Cut the bulb portions and the darker stalks into 1⁄2-inch pieces. Place in colander and wash thoroughly to remove any dirt. Drain well.
  • Add anise and 3 cups water to the garlic-cream mixture. Bring just to a boil, lower heat, and cover. Simmer for another 40 minutes, until anise is very soft.
  • Transfer to blender or food processor and purée in several batches until very smooth. Return to the pot and add salt and white pepper. Heat for several minutes until the soup thickens up a bit.
  • Finely chop the anise fronds and scatter over the soup for garnish. Serve hot, or keep refrigerated and gently reheat before serving.