Liquorice Know-How

Liquorice Know-How

The use of liquorice root is closely tied to the cultural history of mankind, as shown by the sources from early times. In the old Egypt, liquorice was given as grave goods on the last trip to quench thirst and satisfy hunger. For this very reason the story tells that generals and soldiers brought the root along during long marches. In each era of medicine and herbal kitchen many conclusions has been drawn on liquorice. What can be said for sure is that liquorice root has won its place as an integral component of the "medicine cabinet":

suessholz‘grain the liquorice root or leave it in the mouth to become soft, let the juice from the root sipper down and quench your thirst, satisfy your hunger, heal the liver, ease the stomach burn, give ease to chest and lungs, cleanse the body system, protect air pipes from the cold, awaken the Apostolic and squadron. It also has the capacity to help fertility and can be used against fever, cough, heavy breathing, bronchitis and spleen pain…’

The present state of knowledge confirms the calming effect on the throat and stomach. Warning: Glycyrrhizin, the active substance in the liquorice root, stimulates circulation and pure liquorice is therefore recommended only to be consumed in small doses (5g/day).

With excessive intake of pure liquorice, glycyrrhizin reduces the body’s ability to hold calcium but also found to have a positive effect in treatments of herpes viruses.

How and when the black gold was made into the praised candy of today’s measures is not completely clear. Legends revolve around the Dunhill family, liquorice root farmers in Pontefract in Yorkshire, England. At the market they offered customers liquorice root and the product of boiled liquorice root, big loaves of black liquorice. The story tells, a piece of sugar accidently slipped into the dough during the making of the ‚Pane Liquirizia’ and a new kind of liquorice was born. Since 1760 Dunhill is attributed the development from pharmaceutical liquorice to delicious black candy.

The industrial production of liquorice came to broaden the range of flavours, making it cheaper for the consumer but the diversity also made it difficult for small family companies to survive the branch. However, some are still producing until this day – kadó is putting work into tracking them down since they in their traditional craft of liquorice manufacture are able to offer a high quality, diverse and aromatic liquorice.

Liquorice traditionally contains the following ingredients: Sugar, starch, glucose syrup, gelling agent, liquorice extract, flour, salt, ammonium chloride, flavours, glazing agent (anise oil or beeswax) dye (vegetable carbon and coloured liquorice with other food dyes). Gelling agents may be gum arabic, agar, gelatine.

Gum arabic is the resinous sap of some species of acacia tree. The resin from the Sudan is often used in confectionery. Gum arabic consists of simple sugars. To recover the resin, the stem is carved of the acacia tree, leaving the resin removed, cleaned, and used in food and confectionery production.

Agar-agar is a multiple sugar that is extracted from red algae. It is a tasteless gelling agent, whose binding property occurs only about 70%. Therefore, agar-agar is often mixed with other gelling agents.

Gelatine is a high quality protein and has few calories,low fat, low cholesterol and is sugar free. Gelatine has a low potential of being the cause of allergy and contains 18 amino acids, including 9 of the 10 essential. Due to their good gelling properties gelatine is used in the food and confectionery production as well as production of tablets and paper in the photo industry. Gelatine consists mainly of pork rinds, and bones that come from registered slaughterhouses and is in the manufacturing process repeatedly boiled and cleaned in a high temperature. If you would like to find out which sorts of liquorice are free from gelatine at kadó, please select the heading "Diet Liquorice" and the button "Free-free".

Gluten is a wheat protein and essential for the baking properties of flour. Gluten-free flours are cereals and are made fromcorn, buckwheat, rice, millet and potatoes. If you would like to find out which liquorice sorts who are free from gluten at kadó, please select the heading "Diet Liquorice" and the button "Gluten-free".

Ammonium chloride issince ancient time known as rock salt. The water used in the salmiak liquorice, is an artificially produced ammonium chloride. "Liquorice for grown ups" has a share of ammonium chloride from 2% to 7.99%. A high salt and / or salmiak consumption can drive up blood pressure. Together with the stimulation of circulation from the Glycyrrhizin liquorice root is therefore recommended only in very small doses.

Maltitol is a sugar substitute which for example can be made from corn and wheat starch. Maltitol is used in sugar-free and calorie-reduced foods for diabetics.

If you would like to get an idea of how liquorice is actually manufactured, please click »here« to find your way to our gallery. Here you will be able to see, step by step, how our Ginger Carées are made, by hand, by our own secret recipe.


Guest Book

Guest Book

Your story about liquorice is in demand
Please write us!



Lecture with tasting
on 17th and 18th November 2019
(fully booked)

To top of page