Vermicelli is very fine, long strands of pasta - like a skinny spaghetti - often used in soups. The name means 'little worms' in Italian. It's available fresh or dried.
Dried vermicelli is usually sold boxed in coiled nests to prevent the delicate strands from breaking. Serve it with delicate oil-based or thin creamy sauces, because thick sauces will soak into the pasta and make it go soggy.
The term is also used to describe Asian noodles, which are also sold dried, and which come in varying widths, from very thin to wide.
Rice vermicelli can be used in soups or stir-fries, served cold in spicy Asian salads, or used as the basis for some sweets.