Servings/Yield: 2 1/2 quarts


4 lbs. meaty beef soup bones (beef shanks or short ribs)

3 medium carrots, cut into chunks

3 celery ribs, cut into chunks

2 medium onions, quartered

½ cup warm water

3 bay leaves

3 garlic cloves

8 to 10 whole peppercorns

3 to 4 sprigs fresh parsley

3 quarts cold water

1 teaspoon each dried thyme, marjoram and oregano


Place soup bones in a large roasting pan. Bake, uncovered, at 450° for 30 minutes. Add the carrots, celery and onions. Bake 30 minutes longer; drain fat.

Using a slotted spoon, transfer bones and vegetables to a large Dutch oven. Add warm water to the roasting pan; stir to loosen browned bits from pan. Transfer pan juices to kettle. Add seasonings and enough cold water just to cover. Slowly bring to a boil, about 30 minutes. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 4-5 hours, skimming the surface as foam rises. If necessary, add hot water during the first 2 hours to keep ingredients covered.

Remove beef bones and set aside until cool enough to handle. If desired, remove meat from bones; discard bones and save meat for another use. Strain broth through a cheesecloth-lined colander, discarding vegetables and seasonings. If using immediately, skim fat or refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight; remove fat from surface. Broth can be covered and refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for 4-6 months.

© Barbara Deitch 2020