Can *someone else* eat it? Flu + cookies edition.
December 12, 2014 6:59 AM   Subscribe

So. Wednesday I felt totally fine, and baked a batch of (delicious!) cookies for a work party on Thursday. Woke up on Thursday and felt like death. Fever, chills, vomiting, the works. Slept all day and feeling pretty ok again today. Here's my question: are the cookies safe? I've eaten a few, and so has Mr. Arkham but we figure we're already exposed/immune to whatever it was. Think they are safe to share though?
posted by JoanArkham to Health & Fitness (15 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
My guess is they are safe to share, but these are cookies so the best course of action is to test/try each and every one even if that takes the entire weekend.
posted by 724A at 7:02 AM on December 12, 2014 [35 favorites]

What about the cookies makes you think that you got food poisoning from them? It could have been anything you ate, or it might have been a 24-hour bug.

Did you eat raw cookie dough? Frankly, I don't see the connection.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 7:04 AM on December 12, 2014

You're not asking if the cookie ingredients got you sick, right? Your asking if your sick germs are on the cookies? I would guess yes.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 7:05 AM on December 12, 2014 [2 favorites]

Don't share cookies you baked while coming down with the flu.
posted by ryanrs at 7:06 AM on December 12, 2014 [24 favorites]

Response by poster: Yes, I don't think anything in the cookies made me sick. I'm wondering if the cookies would make others sick. My hands were clean before and after making them, but I touched them when I put them in the container.
posted by JoanArkham at 7:07 AM on December 12, 2014

All I can tell you is the same thing happened to me on Thanksgiving, and that (so I'm told) everyone ate the potluck dishes I sent when I was too sick to make it. At that point I thought I was having a reaction to medication, but as the day wore on it became clear I had a stomach bug. No one got sick from eating my green beans, or the uncooked appetizers I prepared.

Having said that, I wouldn't touch your cookies with a 10-foot pole, because I catch everyone else's illnesses without even trying.
posted by ImproviseOrDie at 7:08 AM on December 12, 2014 [1 favorite]

There is no way I would eat them and if I found out later you had the flu while you made them I'd be incensed. On the plus side, that means you have a whole lot of cookies to eat yourself.
posted by fiercecupcake at 7:08 AM on December 12, 2014 [7 favorites]

Bake new cookies.

This from the guy who would happily eat every one of your "sick" cookies.
posted by IAmBroom at 7:10 AM on December 12, 2014 [1 favorite]

If you were only sick for a day or so and you feel better today, my guess is that this is something more like norovirus/stomach flu than influenza. Norovirus can survive for weeks outside your body. Moreover, cookies cannot be disinfected with bleach solution.

You were asymptomatic when you made them, and they were in a closed container over the period when you were ill. However, it sounds like the container was reopened when you ate the cookies after recovering? Also, the outside of the container could be contaminated.

I would not eat your cookies in this situation.
posted by pie ninja at 7:14 AM on December 12, 2014 [5 favorites]

No way would I eat your cookies knowing that you'd been down with stomach flu within hours of making them. When similar has happened to me, I've (sadly) tossed any food prepared the previous day.
posted by tchemgrrl at 7:23 AM on December 12, 2014 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I'm pretty sure its not norovirus - I got that last year and it was a million times worse than this. I won't share the cookies though. Now I'm wondering if I should just dump them.
posted by JoanArkham at 7:23 AM on December 12, 2014 [2 favorites]

Best answer: It definitely wasn't influenza that you had. Norovirus can hit with varying degrees of intensity, and CDC sez you should absolutely not prepare food within 3 days of it. So toss 'em, or eat them yourself (you're immune to it now; if Mr. Arkham hasn't gotten sick yet he's at risk if he eats food you prepare).
posted by magdalemon at 7:26 AM on December 12, 2014 [3 favorites]

Why dump them? You can't avoid exposure to yourself anyway and you're living in a house full of things you touched while you were sick. Eat them!

(p.s I agree, it doesn't sound like the flu).
posted by treehorn+bunny at 7:42 AM on December 12, 2014 [2 favorites]

I think this one comes down to psychological matters as well as actual safety. Whether they're truly 'contaminated' or not, I would be a little nauseated to learn I was eating food that was prepared by an acquaintance right before some pretty severe symptoms showed up. If you're talking about offering them to, say, VERY close family members after warning them, that's one thing (I'd probably eat my mom's flu cookies), but I definitely wouldn't even offer them to people any further out in your social circle.

My vote is to keep those delicious maybe-vectors to yourselves.
posted by DingoMutt at 7:48 AM on December 12, 2014 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thanks, all! I'm going to eat one (or two!) more, then toss them before Mr. Arkham gets home. Better safe than sorry, and I can always make them again. I'm also going to bleach down the kitchen.

(For the record - original M&M cookie recipe with mint M&Ms are a winner!)
posted by JoanArkham at 8:19 AM on December 12, 2014 [1 favorite]

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