Preheat oven to 350° F. Butter and flour an eight cup loaf pan.
Heat the milk in a small saucepan on low heat until warm to the touch. Stir in the honey until blended. Stir in the butter until it is completely melted. Remove from the heat and allow to cool until just warm.
Sift the flour with the sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger; nutmeg and ground cloves into a large mixing bowl. Stir in the cooled milk mixture and then the beaten egg. Mix until well blended. The dough will be stiff and sticky.
Mix in the candied orange peel and the anise seeds if you are using them. Spread dough into the prepared pan (you may need to push on it a bit to get it to fill into the corners). Bake at 350° F for fifty minutes.
Cool cake thoroughly and cover in plastic wrap to store.
Note: Most people agree that honey spice cake tastes better after it has aged a bit and some will even wait several days before eating it. Wrapped in plastic wrap you can save it at room temperature or in the refrigerator. It also freezes very well.