Remove any dried outer leaves from the lemongrass and cut off the dried tips at the top. We want to keep the bottom ⅔ of the stalk. With a blunt object, smash the lemongrass stalks to release the oils. Keep the lemongrass intact and add to the pot
Peel the onion and cut it in half, peel the garlic and keep it intact so you can easily fish it out later when the broth is done. Put them in the pot.
Add in the ginger slices, sugar, lime leaves, star anise into the pot
Add in 12 cups of water and set the heat to medium low and keep it at a low rolling boil.
Mix the shrimp paste with ¼ cup of water and add it into the pot.
Add in the fish sauce (add in half the amount of fish sauce first and then do a taste test to make sure it is not overly salty. If it needs more salt, add in the rest of the fish sauce.
Set a timer for 1 hour and 30 minutes.
You can make the sate chili sauce while you are waiting for the broth to cook and add it into the broth as soon as the sauce has cooled. (Sate Chili Sauce steps below)
Once 1 hour and 30 minutes passes, remove the beef shank and set it aside covered for use later
If your broth reduced a lot, add 2-3 cups of water back to the broth
Set the timer for 1 hour and 30 minutes again and cook the broth for a total of 3 hours. It doesn't hurt to cook this more than 3 hours though! :)
When the broth is done, discard the lime leaves, ginger, garlic, lemongrass, star anise and onion
Do a taste test of the broth, to make sure it has enough salt. Add additional fish sauce to the broth for more flavour.
Remove the pork hock and beef bones and set it aside covered for use later