Garlic. As garlic is often used in French cuisine, any mention of "ail" in the title of a dish indicates a more pronounced use of garlic than usual. It is more widely used in the south of France than elsewhere, and in country dishes than in haute cuisine. It loses some of the violence of its flavour when it is cooked. Garlic is a relative of the lily, the onion and the leek. Len Deighton suggests that you do not flatten cloves of garlic with the side of a knife, as this will scatter particles of garlic onto your clothes, the smell of which will be impossible to remove.