Made this a couple of days ago from an online recipe (http://www.saveur.com/article/Recipes...)
It's not complicated or very labor-intensive and it's just fabulous.
The beef shanks (surprisingly expensive due to the weight of the bones) are put into a large pot filled with cold water, the water is brought to a boil and then the water is drained off.
The shanks are transfered to a clean pot with rice wine, black peppercorns, garlic, tomatoes, star anise, onions, chiles and ginger. Water is added to cover and it's brought to a boil. The temp is then lowered to medium and the beef is simmered for an hour (I found my stove had to be turned down lower than "medium" to keep it from boiling.
After it's cooked it's allowed to sit for an hour. The meat is then taken off the bones and chopped and the broth is drained and put back into the pot. Chinese black vinegar is added along with soy sauce and sugar and then the beef.
Bok choy is chopped and cooked until just tender and then put into soup bowls for serving. Thin egg noodles are cooked, drained and added to the soup. Chopped, pickled chinese vegs are added as garnish....I couldn't find any "Chinese Pickled Vegetables" and so used Kimchee. That worked well.
This is a great winter, full-meal soup and is delicious the next day as well.