Place the whole lamb joint in a slow cooker with 250ml water and cook on high setting for 6 hours or low setting for 8 hours until meat is falling off the bone.
One hour before serving time, core the tomatoes with a corer or knife, and place in a large pan of water, bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes until the skins become loose.
Remove the tomatoes with a slotted spoon. Reserve the water.
Remove the skins of the tomatoes and discard.
Gently mash the tomatoes with a fork and remove the remaining white pithy lumpy bits to leave mashed tomato pieces and juices - do NOT puree.
Remove the lamb from the cooker pot and break off the meat into lean strips.
Cook the pasta in boiling water for 10 minutes, or until the pasta is al dente.
Drain the pasta and place in a saucepan along with the mashed tomato, tomato puree and 400ml of the reserved water and bring gently to a simmer.
Add the meat, season with salt and pepper and bring up to a simmer. stirring it gently so as not to break up the soft lamb pieces and simmer with the lid on for 30 minutes.
Check the pasta is swelling to a softish texture and simmer on a low setting with the lid off to get the desired consistency; the pasta is just soft and the sauce is thickened to a creamy consistency.
Remove from the heat and leave to stand to reach required serving temperature.
Serve on plates or in bowls with fresh crusty bread and butter and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese over the top and more salt and pepper to taste.
This may seem a lot to do but the slow cooker does the work all day, whilst you are busy doing other things. It takes a couple of attempts to get the various stages up to prep speed and try out your seasoning preferences but it makes a lovely, light fresh tasting, family and friends meal which suits summer and winter evenings.
A successful variation I cooked recently was with shoulder of goat but I do not recommend using any other meats as they somehow don't work as well with the tomato as lamb or goat.
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