Mayfield Lavender Fields & Homemade Marshmallows

A whole week off with the family prior to starting maternity leave, and T requested a staycation. From my perspective a good suggestion as sitting for long periods anywhere is increasingly uncomfortable, not to mention sleeping anywhere, let alone somewhere without home comforts! A, however, was less impressed. “I want a proper holiday, on an aeroplane to Spain!”.

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Instead we planned a full itinerary of close-to-home adventures; and A duly came home from her last day at preschool prepared for a week of family fun…. with a bad mood and a temperature of 39ยฐ+. Bah! After one day of sofa rest and pottering around Windsor we decided to carry on with the plan, armed with our purple friend, Calpol; but I’ll be honest this trip to the lavender fields was much more for me and my camera than the slightly poorly 3 year old and beleaguered husband I had in tow!

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T was at least happy to find the coffee shop on our second annual visit to Mayfield, and A relished her car picnic overlooking the incredibly-scented sea of purple. On a grey day, with rain threatening it was pleasingly quiet compared with the litter-throwing mob of a sunny weekend last year. A was undeterred by the bees about their business and the snails creeping through the rows of lavender and happily played hide and seek, posing for a few pictures, wanting to show off the outfit she’d picked out specially.

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Inspired by the lavender-infused delights on offer at the fields (including the most vibrant and melting lavender macarons); I used some of the organic lavender we brought home to make my first homemade marshmallows.

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It was a bit of a cheat, using a kit from Lakeland, but I was nonetheless delighted with the results! I infused the water called for in the recipe with lavender buds and lemon for around an hour, then marbled through a little colouring before they set.

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The result was delicately flavoured, perfect little pillows of billowy sweetness. Free from gluten, dairy and egg so we can all indulge.

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Of all of the adventures we went on to have during our week at home – Legoland, the theatre, swimming camping and pottering around with undivided parental attention; the thing A chose for ‘show and tell’ at nursery was a small bunch of lavender to share the scent of with her friends. But not the marshmallows – they are not for sharing!

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