• 1 3/4-lb (750-g) mixture of young and baby vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, mushrooms, onions and pattypan squash or zucchini, etc
• 2 tbsp (25 ml) dry vermouth
• 1 bay leaf
• 2–3 fresh parsley stems
• 1 sprig thyme
• Salt and black pepper
• 1 oz (25 g) Parmesan cheese, grated
• 2 tbsp (25 ml) whole-wheat bread crumbs

For béchamel sauce:
• 3 tbsp (45 ml) low-fat margarine
• 3 tbsp (45 ml) all-purpose flour
• 2/3 cup (150 ml) 2% milk
• 3 tbsp (45 ml) low-fat sour cream
• 2 tbsp (25 ml) coarsely chopped fresh parsley

1. Prepare vegetables: Trim broccoli or cauliflower into small florets; top and tail carrots; slice mushrooms; quarter onions; halve pattypans or top and tail baby zucchini.

2. Put 2 2/3 cups (600 ml) water into large pot and add vermouth, bay leaf, parsley stems, thyme and salt and pepper. Bring to boil. Add vegetables, reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.

3. Using slotted spoon, transfer vegetables to shallow 1 1/2-quart (1.5 l) flameproof dish. Set aside and keep warm.

4. Discard herbs and return vegetable stock to fast boil. Cook uncovered 10 minutes, or until it reduced by half. Preheat broiler.

5. For sauce, melt margarine in large pot and whisk in flour. Cook 1 to 2 seconds, then gradually strain in stock. Add milk and whisk. Bring to boil, reduce heat, and simmer 3 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in sour cream and chopped herbs, and season to taste.

6. Pour sauce over vegetables, sprinkle cheese and bread crumbs over top and place under broiler for 2–3 minutes, until topping is lightly browned. Serve hot.

Serves 4

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