- Hide menu

Oldfather Fennel “Licorice”

LoadingFavoriteAdd to favorites

Oldfather Fennel “Licorice" wrapped in wax paper

~ raw, vegan, gluten-free, nut-free ~

This particular candy is for all you black licorice lovers out there. Black licorice lovers and left-handed people have much in common… we are uncommon but pretty darn special. ok, ok… we are ALL special but when it comes to black licorice you either love it or hate it.  There never seems to be a middle ground.

I for one, am over-the-moon for it. In fact, if I were sent to the moon and could only take one food with me… I just might select this! hehe I have my mom to thank for this love affair for she ate this stuff nonstop during her pregnancy with me. Or maybe, just maybe… she has ME to thank, for her love of licorice.

If you are unfamiliar with fennel, it tastes much like black licorice, that is why I chose it as one of the ingredients. I prefer to grind fennel seeds every time I use them for a fresh bright flavor.

A helpful tip when creating these candies is to use “dry” date paste.  I know that sounds a bit confusing so let me explain.  When creating the date paste, use the least amount of water needed when getting it to that creamy smooth texture.  I provided a link below on how I make my date paste, please review it.

I mentioned above that we want the date paste creamy smooth. There is a reason… if the date paste has bits of chunks in it, the batter will clog up the piping tip when making the candy.

One other quick matter that I wanted to point out is about wrapping the candy in wax paper.  If you are used to dealing with wax paper you will know that the more you handle it, the more marked up the paper gets.  So, with that being said, once the candies are wrapped, don’t manhandle them too much or they will get white slashes all over them. I hope that makes sense.

Regardless of the above issue, wax paper is perfect for wrapping these candies in. It has a thin coating of wax on each side, making it nonstick and moisture-resistant; it is a good, less-expensive substitute for parchment paper.

If you are looking for a fun way to package these candies… may I suggest these clear buckets?!  They come in different sizes and are perfect for presenting gifts.  blessings, amie sue

Oldfather Fennel “Licorice" wrapped in wax paper and placed in a bucket for gift givingIngredients:

Yields roughly 42 (2” pieces)


Create the candy batter:

  1. Remove the pits from the dates as you put them in the measuring cup.
    • Be sure to inspect each date as you tear it in half to remove the pit.  Mold and insect eggs can infect dried dates.  I don’t mean to gross you out,  you just need to be made aware of this.
  2. Place the date paste, fennel, and salt in the food processor fitted with the “S” blade.  Process until it turns into a creamy paste.

Fill the piping bag:

  1. I used a strong silicone piping bag to handle the thickness of the batter, click (here).  I used the piping tip Ateco #808.
  2. While holding the bag with one hand, fold down the top with the other hand to form a cuff over your hand.
  3. Fill the bag 1/2 full.  If you overfill the bag, the excess batter may squeeze out the wrong end not to mention that you will have less control of the bag when piping.
  4. Close the bag by unfolding the cuff and twisting the bag closed. This forces the batter down into the bag.
  5. “Burping” the bag: Make sure you release any air trapped in the bag by squeezing some of the batter out of the tip into the bowl. This is called “burping” the bag.
    • If you don’t remove the air bubbles they will come out while you are piping your straight line and cause blurps and breaks.  Best to create a seamless line.


  1. Hold the piping bag tip about 1/4″ above the non-stick sheet, at a 22.5-degree angle, and slowly pipe the batter from one edge of the dehydrator tray to the other.
  2. Keep constant pressure on the piping bag as you squeeze out the paste.  This will ensure an even thickness of the line.
  3. After each completed line, stop and retwist the piping bag, working all paste towards the tip.  This will eliminate air bubbles in the bag and give you a solid grip.
  4. Remember: It doesn’t have to be perfect. Just have fun and if you make a mistake, scoop it up, place back in the bag and do it again.

Dehydrate & store:

  1. Place the tray in the dehydrator and dry at 145 degrees (F) for 1 hour, then reduce to 115 degrees (F) for 16-24 hours.
  2. Once cooled, cut into 2” lengths and wrap in squares of wax paper.
  3. I keep mine stored in the fridge for freshness but they can be left out at room temp.
  4. These candy chews won’t be hard or crunchy.

Culinary Explanations:

  • Why do I start the dehydrator at 145 degrees (F)?  Click (here) to learn the reason behind this.
  • When working with fresh ingredients it is important to taste test as you build a recipe.  Learn why (here).

Oldfather Fennel “Licorice" candies placed in a bucket for gift giving

4 thoughts on “Oldfather Fennel “Licorice”

  1. Gayle says:

    I will be trying to make these next week to surprise my husband. He loves licorice!

  2. Gayle says:

    Licorice is in Miss D.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *