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Field To Shield 2

Field to Shield: A Culinary Experience with Chef Jenni Lessard in Saskatchewan

By Gabrielle Mueller/

Great Taste of Canada
Chef jenni boat
Chef Jenni out on Otter Lake

The Food of Saskatchewan with Chef Jenni

Travelling north from downtown Saskatoon to Thompson’s Resort in Missinippie and filling your belly and heart along the way, you’ll want to check this out. 

While we couldn’t possibly tell you about the entire experience in a single blog (nor would we want to spoil the many surprises along the way), we can tell you about a few of the highlights we enjoyed from the test run. 

Cultural Learning 

Setting Intentions for Your Trip

Starting along the riverfront in downtown Saskatoon, you’ll be welcomed to the experience by Honey Constant-Inglis, a Plains Cree archaeologist, artist, heritage educator, and advocate who will guide a smudge ceremony and help you set intentions for your trip. 

Try to take this moment to really quiet your mind and listen.

Honey Intro Field to Shield
Honey explaining a bit more to us after the smudging ceremony. Please note, this part of the experience is technology-free.


Heading onto the bus, you’ll make several stops along your way (and on the way back to Saskatoon) at sites like Wanuskewin where you’ll see buffalo jumps as old as 1500 years and go on a guided plant walk with the staff. You’ll also learn about how the buffalo have been reintroduced to the park. 

Wanuskewin Batoche
On the top left and bottom right: Batoche National Historic Site; On the bottom left and top right: Wanuskewin Heritage Park

Batoche National Historic Site

Here, you’ll learn about the Riel Resistance and important events that took place right in the park from a Parks Canada Guide. 

Chef Jenni will also sprinkle in some of the history of her own Métis ancestors and the importance of this site. 

Finally, you’ll wind down here with a delicious and refreshing snack! We’re talking the iconic puffed wheat square (think of a chocolate rice crispy square except better) and a Saskatoon Berry Blast to quench your thirst.

Chef Jenni helped curate the menu at Batoche and her attention to detail is evident. 

Batoche snacks
This puffed wheat and Saskatoon Berry Blast was the perfect refreshment!

Learning from Woodlands Cree Guides

Upon arriving at Thompson’s Resort in Missinipe on Treaty Six Territory, you’ll be dazzled by the scenery (forget the flat plains, this is Canadian Shield territory) but it’s the people that will really take your breath away. This will be your home for the week.

All week, you’ll get the pleasure of interacting and learning from guides of the Cree Nation here on Treaty Six Territory. 

From creating a traditional birch bark craft and blueberry picking with Leona to a trapline visit to chat with one of the community’s elders accompanied by his niece, Sekwan,- every bit of time with your guides is filled with surprises and opportunities to learn. 

Our favourite part? A day of fishing with the guides, Paul and Jace, who taught us how to catch walleye (pickerel) and pike (jack) aboard a pontoon boat. 

Afterwards, we were delighted to enjoy a filleting demo (with the option to get our hands a little dirty) and a traditional shore lunch at the site of a waterfall. It was really special and you just can’t beat that fresh-caught taste. 

We recommend getting to know them, hearing about what living on Treaty Six Territory is like and soaking in every bit of knowledge they share. 

Fishing Thompsons 1
A day of fishing and cooking a traditional shore lunch!
Birch blueberries thompsons
Crafting with birch bark and wild blueberry picking

Cooking with Jenni and Celebrating Saskatchewan

How often do you get to spend a week in the wilderness learning from a celebrity chef? Well, now is your chance! Part of this trip is an interactive cooking class with Chef Jenni herself. 

While you’ll be eating food prepared by Chef Jenni all week, the cooking class is your chance to really learn from her. 

When we demoed the experience, we made hand-pinched Ukrainian pierogies filled with Saskatchewan-grown red lentils, potatoes and cheese and learned how to make Saskatoon berry tarts - yum! Trust us when we say, there were loads of laughs along the way too. 

We created a beautiful spread with locally-made sausages, homemade juniper and dill sour cream and more - you’ll be proud of your work and incredibly full. 

Cooking class
Cooking class spread
We're still dreaming about the fresh dill and foraged juniper sour cream that Chef Jenni made to go with our pierogies!

Closing Dinner

One of the coolest parts of the week comes at the very end. You’ll finish your time at Thompson’s Resort with a beautiful four-course, long-table dinner served up by Chef Jenni. 

Each course tells a different story of Chef Jenni’s and dazzles your taste buds. Think everything from a beet and chantarelle “tartare” paired up with a cocktail featuring fireweed simple syrup and Vodkow, to a barley, pickerel (that you helped catch!), and smoked cheddar arancini with sweet gale seasoned bannock crumbs on nettle cream. 

You’ll join together around the table with all the guides who shared with you that week, a few Thompson Resort staff members as well as your fellow experience mates. It’s the perfect way to come together and chat over everything you’ve enjoyed together. 

Field to shield long table
A beautiful four-course meal topped the whole week off!

Experience Field to Shield for Yourself

Think you might like to take part in this once-in-a-lifetime experience yourself? Stay tuned for ticket launch, dates and all the details on the Adventure Destinations landing page