VERMICELLI is a dried paste, manufac tured chiefly in Italy, in the form of smooth round strings. The name has been given to it on account of its worm-like appearance, ver micelli in Italian signifying little worms.' Afaccarani is manufactured of the same kind of paste as vermicelli, and in a similar man ner; but is rather larger in diameter, and is hollow like the tube of a tobacco-pipe. Fede Hai is a kind still smaller than vermicelli.
The paste is made of wheat stripped of the husk, and ground roughly into a sort of grit.. The kind of wheat preferred by the Italians is a small hard-grained species which they now cultivate on purpose, but which they formerly imported from the coasts of the Black Sea ' Grano di Mar Nero.' The ground wheat is mixed with clear soft water, and made into a paste by kneading it on a large block. The toughness and elasticity of the paste result from a long and powerful process of kneading. The paste is next forced by strong pressure through round holes in the bottom of a cylin der; but, to form maccaroni, a wire extends from a bridge in the upper part of the cylinder through the centre of each of the largest holes, and the paste, being forced through each hole around tho wire, is consequently hollow. The
strings, several feet in length, whether of maccaroni, vermicelli, or fedelini, having been thorom;hly dried, are ready for use.
The Italians manufacture the paste into many other forms; into thin flat strips like ribbons, into thin sheets like paper, into round balls, and into beans and peas. The Neapoli tans, who use great quantities of maccaroni as their favourite food, use nothing but the pure paste of wheat and water, but the Genoese mix saffron with it, which gives it a yellow tinge. The French, who also manufacture a good deal of it, frequently season the paste with various condiments.