Preheat oven to 200C. Roughly chop pears into 1cm pieces and combine in a saucepan with muscovado sugar, vanilla bean and seeds, stir frequently over low-medium heat until just starting to soften (15-20 minutes), then spread into a 2 litre-capacity, 20cm-square baking dish. Set aside to cool (5-10 minutes).
Meanwhile, for poppy-seed gelato, soften vanilla gelato slightly at room temperature, then beat briefly in an electric mixer with poppy seeds to combine. Freeze until required.
Meanwhile, for muscovado crumble, use your fingers to combine ingredients in a bowl until fine crumbs form. Scatter evenly over pear mixture and bake until golden (30-40 minutes). Serve with poppy-seed gelato.
This recipe is from the August 2009 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.