Vermicelli can be equated to Italian pasta in terms of appearance and taste. In East Asian countries including China, vermicelli is often made using rice in the shape of thin noodles. They are called bihon (bee hoon) or mai fun in China. Sometimes they are also made using mung beans in a semi transparent appearance. In India, vermicelli noodles are used to prepare a type of sweet dessert called kheer or semiya payasam.