Spoons were first used by the Egyptians, who made them out of ivory, flint and slate. While the materials may have changed over the centuries, we still use spoons to cook and eat all kinds of food, including desserts, soups and stews. There are many different sorts of spoons used in cooking, from common varieties like wooden and rice spoons, to more unusual models with specific uses, like olive spoons and cheese scoops. Spoons are used during special occasions, too. In Britain, for example, a special spoon is used in the coronation of a new sovereign to pour holy oil on the new royal's head. Mousse Derived from the French word to 'lather' or to 'foam', a mousse is usually a dessert, commonly made from eggs and cream. It can be light and airy, or thick and creamy, as in the popular French dessert mousse au chocolat. Try: Antique Patisserie G/F, Shop C, 2 Mee Lun Street, Central (2542 2816) Gelato An Italian dessert that has become popular all over the city, gelato dates back to Rome and Egypt. People used to bring snow and ice down from the mountain tops and preserve it below ground, ready for hot summer days. It derives its flavours typically from nut pastes, fruit purees or cocoa. Try: XTC Gelato - all over Hong Kong ( www.xtc.com.hk ) Summer soup 1 onion, peeled and finely chopped 1 potato, peeled and chopped 1 bunch watercress, washed thoroughly, roots and woody stalks removed, then roughly chopped 1 cup frozen peas 1 bunch fresh mint 1l chicken or vegetable stock olive oil salt and pepper Steps 1 Heat the oil then add the onion and fry over a medium heat until soft, but not brown. Season with salt and pepper. 2 Add the potato and stock, turn up the heat, and cook until almost tender (about 10 minutes). 3 Add the peas, and cook for two minutes, then add the watercress and cook for a further two minutes. 4 Remove from heat and add the mint. 5 Blend in a food processor or with a stick blender. Serve immediately, or for a cool summer starter, chill for an hour, and serve with ice cubes and a drizzle of plain yogurt.