We have a small family so I usually buy a very small turkey, or just bone-in turkey breast. I always grill/smoke my turkey. In the interest of saving money and stretching dollars this year, I bought a 20 pound turkey from Fresh and Easy with the plan of using only the breast(s) and using the rest of the bird to make stock. That turkey cost about 1/3 of the 12 pound turkey I usually buy - and probably 25% of the cost of just the turkey breast.
Now I'm beginning to panic because I have never worked with a 20 pound turkey - it is frozen solid and I believe it will take 3-5 days to thaw in the refrigerator. I have also never cut up a turkey before and really don't even cut up chicken very often. I do have poultry shears, a cleaver and good knives.
My thoughts are that I should move the turkey from the freezer to the fridge this coming Thursday so that it will be thawed by next Monday or Tuesday. I can hack the turkey on Tuesday and make the stock. Then brine the breasts on Wednesday.
Does anyone have any tips, suggestions or warnings about all of this???