Garlic is the root of the Allium sativum plant, which is a member of the onion family of plants. The root is in the form of a bulb that consists of several individual cloves of garlic. Like onions, Garlic sweetens in flavor as it is cooked.
Garlic powder is also handy to have on hand for a variety of recipes. The powder form is especially useful in making dips and salad dressings, because the Garlic flavor is spread more uniformly throughout the smooth mixtures. It can be added to simple mayonnaise to create the Italian favorite known as aioli.
Vegetables have a heightened flavor when Garlic is used with them. French fries made of potatoes or sweet potatoes benefit from a sprinkling of garlic. It is wonderful added to mashed potatoes as well.
Chicken can be simply prepared with a few kitchen pantry staples, including Garlic salt. Try it Greek style, with garlic, lemon juice, oregano and black pepper for a wonderful, toothsome taste.
Pasta and side dishes call out for garlic. Marinara, a tomato-based sauce for pasta, would not be the same without an ample dash of garlic. Pasta dishes are wonderful served with a side of Garlic bread. This can be prepared easily at home with a loaf of sliced French or Sourdough bread upon which has been drizzled olive oil, and then garlic, oregano and paprika sprinkled on top and cooked under the broiler until golden brown.