I know Mad Max and other recipes suggest putting bags of ice on the turkey breasts so they will cook slower than the dark pieces. I totally agree with the concept. My wife (I was out picking up some elderly guests) pulled our Christmas turkey at 160. It was the most amazing white meat turkey I had ever tasted. However, the dark meat she said really wasn't quite done so she put it in the microwave (I cringe).
My question is whether the icing really works much. (The above Christmas turkey was iced.) I pull my turkey out of the fridge about 30 minutes before it goes on the grill. The meat is usually between 38 and 40 degrees and really isn't going to warm up significantly. Is putting 32 degree ice on the breast really going to make a difference?
It would seem the goal should not be to just cool the breast but also warm up the thighs. Letting it sit out long enough to do so naturally seems risky. I would think it would make sense to run some luke warm or room temp water over the thighs for several minutes and then put the ice on the breasts. This would create more real difference in the temps pre-cook.
My concern is that is it not good for the quality of the meat to run luke warm water over a cold bird? The reason I ask is that in every defrosting instruction for turkey I have read it always acts like sitting the bird in water is a last resort for defrosting. Given that this would be the easiest way to defrost I figure it must not be good for the meat.
Anyway, I did a turkey for Easter and iced it (but no warming of the thighs). I pulled it at 167 in the breast as a comprommise to avoid the Christmas problem of the dark meat not being done. The breast was extremely good but not quite as good as that Christmas turkey. The dark meat was fine and did not have to be nuked.
League City, TX