MN Instagram Celebrity’s Cookbook Recalled for Toxic Ingredients
We're used to food recalls, but a cookbook recall?
A cookbook by a Minnesota blogger/Instagram celebrity has been recalled due to the inclusion of recipes that call for wild mushrooms and elderberries, both of which can be toxic.
Johnna Holmgren -- who goes by the name FoxMeetsBear on Instagram and has 132K followers -- lives in Minnesota with her husband and three children.
In May, Johnna published a book with Rodale Books titled Tales from a Forager's Kitchen: The Ultimate Field Guide to Evoke Curiosity and Wonderment with More Than 80 Recipes and Foraging Tips. "Her cookbook is more than just a book," it states, "it's an escape to another realm, a retreat into nature, and a taste of the life she lives." As the title and synopsis implies, it's clearly intended for "adventurous eaters."
Still, the cookbook raised some questions among Amazon buyers who became concerned by recipes calling for raw ingredients like morel mushrooms and elderberries, both of which are toxic if not cooked.
One recipe for a smoothie includes both morel mushrooms and elderberries; another recipes dips morel mushrooms in chocolate. But -- while Johnna claims she and her family have never gotten sick after eating these ingredients -- "false morels" can make people sick; according to the Michigan Department of Community Health, false morels "contain the toxin gyromitrin which is toxic to the liver" and can lead to symptoms including "nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, dizziness, headache, muscle cramps, bloating, and fatigue."
Following the concerns expressed by buyers, Rodale Books released a statement announcing they would no longer be promoting or distributing Johnna's cookbook:
"In light of our review of these concerns, and because of our dedication to wellness, Rodale Books and Johnna Holmgren have decided to discontinue the publication and promotion of the book. We are encouraging retailers to return their stock, and we are offering a full refund to consumers who have purchased the book."