I have a beautiful, top quality beef tenderloin in the fridge. It's from my local butcher and I know it's been handeled with great care up to now.
As my guests had to cancel, I'll have to freeze it - even planning for leftovers we won't be able to eat all of it. We are talking about a scant 2 kg /4 pounds of meat.
I'm wondering if I should freeze it whole or in small/individual portions:
Does it influence the quality of the meat whether it was frozen & thawed as a large "chunk" or in smaller pieces?
Im not asking about practical considerations like what kind of dish I'm planning to cook afterwards, but rather about physics: Once the meat is frozen, the ice crystals will invariably do some damage to the cells that can lead to some loss of water when thawing. But are there other influences to be considered?
To cut a long story short:
How can I preserve the quality as much as possible?
As nobody had an idea so far, I've decided to start a little experiment.
I took the tenderloin and
- cut off a few tournedos (and one tiny slice for the begging, no starving cat ^_^)
- left the rest "en bloc".
So let's see what happens in a couple of weeks, when I take them out again...