I started defrosting my 17 pound turkey 3 days early and on Thursday morning it was still pretty stiff. I put it in my 20 quart stock pot and added the salted water until it was covered. I left it on the counter for 4 hours. It was still very cold at the end of brining but defrosted. I rinsed and dried the bird, oiled it and salted and peppered it. Cooked it at 325 for 4 1/2 hours and it came out perfectly. I let it rest for 30 minutes before carving. Everyone commented on how moist and flavorful it was. I cooked the stuffing outside the bird. I think that also helped keep the turkey moist. I am a convert. The next day I boiled the carcass with onion, carrot, celery, bay leaf, etc. for 6 hours and got 11 quarts of the richest turkey stock. I already used some of it to make a mixed bean soup. The dogs have also been happy eating the giblets and the meat from the stock.
A real chowish weekend.