As early as 2000 BC, the Chinese cooked with it and garlic is now used world-wide. It is a member of the allium family that also includes onions, chives, shallots, spring onions and leeks. The most common varieties of garlic contain 10 cloves (or segments) with white skin. Other varieties have pink or purple skin and larger cloves. As a rule, the smaller the clove, the stronger the taste.