Licorice Soda

We may not drink alcohol in our household, but we still love to get creative with drinks. 
I’ve recently taken up making homemade soda syrups, which has been a huge hit.
We do have a Soda Stream, but you can also just buy carbonated water at the grocery store, such as seltzer water.  For New Year’s Eve we plan on toasting with some homemade soda such as this one,  which I also served at our German dinner party this fall.  I set out a few soda syrups with some carbonated water and small tasting cups so everyone could sample them with the appetizers.  They were a big hit! 
This was even well liked by those who don’t like licorice, which really surprised me.  I loved how frothy it gets when you add the carbonated water, and it almost has a creamy feel to it.  The licorice flavor is definitely there, but even if you don’t enjoy black licorice candy, licorice root definitely has a different flavor to it you may enjoy.   Tune in tomorrow and I’ll share my Hibiscus soda recipe, my personal favorite!
3 cups water
2 oz dried licorice root, chopped
4 star anise
3 cups brown sugar
seltzer water to serve
Pour the water, licorice root, star anise, and brown sugar all in a large pot and bring to a simmer over medium heat, uncovered.  Let simmer 5 minutes, then remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.  Strain through a fined strainer (I store mine in a canning jar) and chill in the fridge. 
Store in the refrigerator up to 2 months.
To serve, ladle about some syrup into a glass, and pour seltzer water over syrup. (We liked about equal parts, but play around and see how strong you like it.) 
Makes about 6 servings, but depends how strong you like it and how big of glasses you serve in.
Recipe adapted slightly from Homemade Soda by Andrew Schloss
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