Did you know that Black Licorice is made from Licorice Root and Red Licorice is made from Star Anise. Both ingredients have a black licorice flavor but at different intensities. I love using dried licorice root with big flavors like rhubarb or pink grapefruit. It infuses an interesting back note to the fruit without being over powering., Many people that don't even like the taste of black licorice candy can't even identify the additonal flavor as black licorice... It's kind of 'there', without being 'there'... and it has a natural sweetness to it too..
Star Anise on the other hand needs to be handled with more caution.... It is more intense and has a more distinct licorice-ness when added and simmered together with fruits. It is much harder to 'hide', and infusing this flavor needs to be done with considerable care as it is less forgiving when over used. I love the taste of star anise with cherries in my Fruit Rice Puddings... I tried the star anise with pink grapefruit as well. It makes for a great taste combination but if you add too much star anise, you can't eat very much of this fruit rice pudding in one go ... still, a cool taste though.