1 cup beluga lentils
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 cups water
2 teaspoon salt
1/2 pound sunchokes, scrubbed clean
3 tablespoons toasted walnuts, chopped
1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 cup walnut oil
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
chicken bones from two chickens
2 medium sized yellow onions
2 sprigs fresh thyme
4 cups chicken stock
2-2 1/2-pound chickens, deboned with wing attached
Simmer lentils in water with bay leaf, vinegar and salt until lentils are tender but still retain a bit of bite to them. Simmer sunchokes in salted water until tender. Cut on the bias into bite sized chunks. Melt butter and whisk in mustard. Mix together mustard-butter, lentils, sunchokes and walnuts. Reserve.
Whisk walnut oil and sherry vinegar with salt and pepper to taste. Reserve.
In a roasting pan, roast chicken bones until golden brown. Slice onions and caramelize in a saute pan (with vegetable oil, season with salt). Combine bones and onions in a pot with chicken stock and thyme. Reduce by half, strain and season to taste. Reserve.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In a hot cast iron pan, add 1/8th of an inch of oil. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Place skin side down in pan. Place something weighty like a brick wrapped in foil or another cast iron pan on top. Turn the heat to low and cook till the skin turns golden brown. Remove weight and flip the chicken over. Transfer the pan to oven to finish cooking.
Place lentil and sunchoke mixture on a plate. Rest chicken on top. Drizzle with walnut vinaigrette and finish with chicken jus (optional).