I came up with this yesterday, and it worked really well - you don't need a pre-browning stage, and the soupiness that slowcooker dishes are prone to isn't a problem. And beef shanks are a nice, cheap protein. The spicing here is vaguely Moroccan - if you want, switch to Italian seasonings (garlic, basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, etc).
Put the following in a slowcooker -
2 beef shanks (shin muscle), whole, trimmed of fat.
2 cans diced tomatoes (each can ~ 250 ml/250 g)
1 can water
~4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon powdered ginger
2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
hearty grinding of black pepper.
Cook until the meat is very tender.
Remove the meat from the liquid and set aside.
Puree the liquid with a handblender, adding salt and a bit of lemon juice to taste. Add a bit of water if it's too strong.
Slice/shred the meat.
Serve the liquid portion as a tasty vegetable soup on the side. Serve the meat with with rice or potatoes, or a nice loaf of bread.