How to do –
1. Cold water and beef shank in deep pot, bring to boil and rinse the beef in clean water;
2. Add the beef and all spices and seasoning ingredients in a deep pot, I prefer to use casting iron pot so that the marinade sauce wouldn’t evaporated while cooking. Add enough water till the beef is covered;
3. Bring to boil, have a taste of the sauce, and adjust with salt and sugar. It should taste a little salty since we wouldn’t eat the sauce. Then simmer for an hour in low heat;
4. Turn off the heat and let the beef sit in the pot for two hours, overnight even better. I usually make it in the morning and serve in the evening, or prepare it in the evening and serve the day after;
5. Slice thinly. If I serve it as a side dish, I would like to mix it with chili oil and shredded cucumber. I usually prepare a big amount, put in fridge and take whenever I want.
Marinading is a very common Chinese cooking method. We marinade meat, fish, tofu, vegetables (usually root vegetables). After finishing one marinading dish, I wouldn’t pour off the sauce. Sieve the spices from the sauce and keep the liquid in a jar, always store in freezer, and save for next time.