Here is a recipe for the meal in a bowl. A simplified version of more complex Russian recipe for Solianka.
Crosscut shank with bone in - 3.5 - 4 lb
Large carrots, grated – 2
Parsnip, small to average, grated - 1
Large onion finely chopped – 1
Pickle, for G-ds sake, people, use the dill not the vinegar pickle, I don’t know how people eat them anyway, large – 2
Olives, I mixed green and black chopped ones together – 1 cup
(My family doesn’t like olives, if you do - do not chop them at all)
Tomato sauce – 2 cans
Hot jalapeno (or other hot) pepper, chopped – 1
Sweet red bell pepper, chopped – 1
Garlic, freshly chopped – 2 cloves
Parsley, dill – about a pinch or more
Lemon, sliced, for serving - 1
Rise – 2 cups
Cold cuts, cut into small cubes or chopped anyway you like about – 2
In the large pot cook beef or “the other white meat” (if you like) in about 6 quarts of water, cook uncut. Basically, you need good meat base bullion. I use beef and I like to cook it for a long time to make sure the beef is very tender. I like to cook with some salt and freshly ground pepper. After water boils, I clean the foam of the top and at that time add onion, carrots and parsnip. And let it simmer till ready. Take the meat out and let it cool. At that time add pickles, olives, tomato sauce or paste, you’ll just need less of it. Hot and sweet pepper and garlic. Let it cook for about 15-20 minutes add rice. Now, about the cold cuts. I keep the whole bunch of them already cut in the freezer. It could be anything, salami and bologna, ham and smoked turkey, leftover of some cooked chicken you had the other day, hotdogs and bratwurst, if you like kidneys and tongue it is even better. Just through all of them into the pot let it cook till they are hot (they really do not have to be cooked, as they are already cooked). When meat gets cold enough to handle it, cut it into small cubes and add back to soup, together with cold cuts. Taste and adjust for salt and pepper. Soup has to be spicy and with a hint of pickle. I prefer to use hot red pepper to make it spicy rather than black pepper.
For serving, you’ll need sour cream or mayo-lemon mixture. I like to mix a little bit of mayo with some lemon juice, add about a half of a teaspoon for a bowl of soup. Slice the lemon and hang a half of a slice on the side of the bowl. For those who will want the soup more tart they will squeeze the juice right into the bowl. Sprinkle some dill and parsley (for the smell) and serve.
You are what you eat.