I have tested everything I recommend freezing, and there is obviously some quality loss when you bring it back. For any item that this quality loss is largely noticeable, I will not recommend freezing it. I find dough and dough products (cookie dough, pastries, bread) work alright in the freezer. I am typically not a fan of freezing cooked meats. There are exceptions. Meat-based stock does fine in the freezer. Bizarrely, so does fried chicken.
- Wait until the item is room temp (or colder, i.e. meat you just brought home from the grocery store.)
- Freeze in the quantities you are going to cook. When I get home from the store, I portion meat into the desired servings, wrap each serving in wax paper so that it doesn’t get stuck together, put the servings in a large freezer bag, date it, and freeze it. I clean and reuse the bags if they’re not punctured. Recycling makes me sleep easier at night.
- Drying the surface helps to cut down on freezer burn. Alton Brown, my favorite celebrity chef, did an entire show on freezing. Brilliant. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J1X2BvpX_U8 **
Oven/Toaster Oven vs. Microwave
***By the way, I don’t just pirate his show. I have bought all his books, and was sorely tempted by the dinosaur headed spray bottle (no longer available) on his website. I also watch his show when it’s chock full of commercials on the food network. I just use youtube to refresh my memory when needed. When he visits, if I’m available, I will stand in line to hear him talk. Yeah, I’m that geeked out. Don’t feel the need to follow that lead.