Curd Atonement: YouTuber Babish Gets Right With Wisconsin in New Show

Botched by Babish is a new series where the food-tuber seeks redemption from his old episodes.

Once upon a time there was a food YouTuber named Andrew Rea (aka Babish). He wanted to show his nearly 9 million followers how to make the classic Canadian dish, poutine. The recipe is simple enough – take some french fries and fresh cheese curds, then slather the combo with gravy – but Babish made a pretty glaring mistake. 

He used mozzarella instead of curds: 

What may be worse, is that he was aware of the mistake when he filmed the video, claiming he couldn’t find them because “sometimes you don’t live in Wisconsin or Quebec,” and “Canadians please forgive me, I didn’t have to tell you the truth.”

They didn’t forgive him. 

“As a Canadian, your lack of cheese curds deeply offends me and I will write a slightly passive aggressive letter to your mailbox,” YouTube user Walter commented on the original poutine video. 

Nearly two years later, Babish is trying to make up for one of his most controversial videos in five years of YouTubeing. He kicked off his new series, “Botched by Babish,” with an episode about how to properly make poutine. He even brought in Canada’s Matty Matheson to advise on the recipe. 

Perhaps more importantly, he brought in Wisconsin cheese curds to set the record straight. The curds are from Ellsworth Cooperative Creamery in Ellsworth, west of Eau Claire. He opted for a bag of the natural cheddar curds. 

“We’ve got real cheese curds,” Babish says as he piles the curds high, not messing around this time. “These are Wisconsin cheese curds, they are plenty squeaky and squeaky and squeaky, and that’s really all there is to it.”

Here’s to hoping he’ll recreate the Paunch Burger from “Parks & Rec.” He forgot the bacon, so the 2,400-calorie monstrosity is basically a salad. 



Allison Garcia is the Digital Editor for Milwaukee Magazine.