Line a 13x9x2-inch pan with foil; lightly grease foil. Set aside. In a large bowl, combine sugar, flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, ground anise, baking powder, salt and cayenne pepper. In a medium bowl whisk together oil, eggs and vanilla; add egg mixture all at once to flour mixture. Stir with a wooden spoon just until combined. Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan.
Bake in 350 degree F oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. (Edges will be firm and center set.) Cool in pan on a wire rack. Lift up on foil to remove brownies. Cut into bars to serve. Makes 24 brownies.
To get 1 to 2 teaspoons freshly ground anise, place 3/4 to 1-1/2 teaspoons of whole anise seeds in a spice grinder or coffee grinder. Grind to a fine powder. Mixture will fluff up when ground.