Not hard at all. It's like anything else you de-bone it just requires patience and a very sharp knife. A word to the wise though.... Start on the back of the turkey. This is where I actually split the skin and start to remove the meat. Then when I go to stuff and truss things I use a 12" skewer and "thread" it through the skin. The skewer also aides in trussing the bird.
Oh yeah, two trickey things to watch for. First is when you get to the bones around the thigh/breast area don't have allot of meat and around the joint for the breast/wing. Be gingerly and don't puncture/cut through the skin. And secondly you need to have a rack to support the turkey since the stuffing doesn't offer the same support as the rib cage. I found an adjustable roasting rack (it's a wire rack with two additional racks attached that serve as adjustable wings. This works great since you can adjust the angle of these.
I end up roasting the carcass, neck and an additional package of wings (or two) for stock. works out great!
I'll try and post pics when I do ours the Wednesday before the day.
Hehe just joking. But yeah the roasting racks with adjustable sides are very handy when there's a lot of soft meat to support, plus you can sneak some veg for the gravy under the sides of them into the roasting pan.
Is it hard? Well if you de-bone chx at least 1 a week then not at all. If you never de-bone whole poultry then it will be some tricky going, and you may end up leaving a lot of meat on the bone and damaging the other stuff (don't worry it will tasted the same).
The question is why? All meat taste better when cooked on the bone, and turkey is one of the meats that needs all the help it can get. Even if you just need the meat (For soup or enchillada filling etc...) roast it first and then take the meat off (before you put it in the fridge).
"Just can't wait to get on the road again." Willie Nelson
Presentation, shorter cook time, more flavorful stuffing, moister meat, not having to chuck the stuffing after dinner, the guest bragging rights aspect of "hey ya know what? We were served a turkey with no bones tonight...." better able to season the meat without the bones.....and quite frankly when your talking about an animal that weighs close to 25lbs before cooking, I believe there's very little benefit to the meat picking up more flavor from the bones when you probably would benefit more from roasting the bones and adding them to a stock pot. We're talking gravy here, the liquid gold of almost every Thankgiving dinner. You could serve me the bird from National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation and the gravy would make it work for me. Not really.:crazy: But the gravy is worth it's weight in......