It was this soup that started my lifelong love of adding sour cream to things. The way the tangy, rich cream melts into the hot, beefy broth is a wonder to behold.
- 1 (1 inch thick) slice bone-in beef shank
- 3 quarts water
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 cup chopped carrots
- 1/2 cup chopped celery
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 cups diced peeled beets
- 2 cups chopped cabbage
- 1/4 cup white vinegar, or to taste
- salt and ground black pepper to taste
- 1 cup sour cream, for garnish
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, for garnish
- Cook beef shank in a large soup pot over high heat until browned, about 3 minutes per side; add water, onion, carrots, celery, and bay leaf to the pot, bring to a simmer and cook until meat is tender and falling off the bone, about 4 hours. Strain broth and discard solids.
- Combine beef broth, beets, and cabbage in a large soup pot; cook, stirring occasionally, until beets are tender, about 30 minutes. Reduce heat to low; add vinegar, salt, and black pepper.
- Serve garnished with sour cream and dill.