Via: Tara Fisher
Put the sugar in a pan, split the vanilla pods lengthways and scrape out the seeds with the tip of a knife, mixing them into the sugar with your fingertips. Pour in the milk and bring almost to the boil. Take off the heat and set aside for 30 minutes to cool.
Preheat the oven to 150°C/gas mark 3. Beat together 3 whole eggs and 3 yolks in a bowl (save the 3 egg whites for another recipe), then strain in the milk and stir in the cream. Strain the mixture through a sieve into a jug, then pour into a non-stick 23cm ring-shaped cake tin or metal jelly mould. Put the mould into a small roasting tin and pour hot, not boiling, water into the roasting tin until it comes halfway up the outside of the mould. Bake for 40-45 minutes until set but still slightly wobbly.
Remove the tin from the oven and lift the mould out of the hot water. Leave to cool at room temperature then chill for at least 2 hours.
Halve the apricots and remove the stones. Slice open the vanilla pods lengthways, scrape out the seeds with a knife and mix into the sugar with your fingertips. Put the vanilla sugar, 500ml water and the vanilla pods into a pan and leave over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved, stirring occasionally. Bring to a simmer and add the apricots. Bring back to a simmer until the apricots are just tender when pierced with a cocktail stick. This will depend on the ripeness of your fruit, so keep an eye on them. Lift the apricots out of the syrup with a slotted spoon. Return the syrup to the heat and boil rapidly until reduced by half. Add the lemon juice, leave to cool, then strain over the fruit. Chill the apricots or serve at room temperature.
To turn out the baked cream ring, press lightly with your fingertips around the outer and inner edge to break the seal from the tin. Dip for 15 seconds into a bowl of hot, not boiling, water. Give it a gentle shake then invert on to a plate. Serve with the apricots.