Help! I don't have a spice grinder or a mortar/pestle, and I need to grind some aniseed. Any ideas of how I might do it?
Hmm - can you put it in a plastic baggie and gently pound it with a meat tenderizer or a small pan? That'll be more crushed than ground but better'n nuttin' ... oh maybe go over it with a rolling pin too
you can try rolling them with a wine bottle/rolling pin.
or squishing them with a meat pounder.
place them on a rimmed cookie sheet to try and contain them.
a clean coffee grinder also works
The bottom of a glass will also work if it's not to many of them.
If more inclined to garage tools that kitchen tools, you could use a hammer instead of a meat tenderizer.
I wish I can send you one from Kerala India it's less than 3 US $
Pauljoseph I wish you could too.....they look wonderfully efficient. I want one.
Grinding your aniseed by hand with something heavy while keeping it contained sounds best. Get yourself a grinder though, you won't be sorry.
If you have a pepper grinder, empty the pepper corns and add the aniseed and set the grinder to the setting you like. You might get some larger pieces, but you can sieve them out. When you're done, grind a broken up soda cracker in the grinder to remove the oils from the aniseed.
Many thanks, all. I started with the meat tenderizer, moved on to the rolling pin, then the hammer, and finally ended with the pepper grinder--success! After all this I will indeed invest in a spice grinder. And perhaps I'll have to visit Kerala soon to stock up on great kitchen gear :)
I have a metal one circa 1915 from my grandmother.
If you ever decide to go with mortar and pestle set, that would be a best choice and here are listed top models: https://www.nutriinspector.com/best-mortar-and-pestle/
Most blenders can grind spices if you have enough to engage the blades (half a cup or so).