When I was growing up, every Sunday after church my Grandma Altena would make Sunday dinner for the family. All my uncles, aunts, and cousins would show up, and even great uncles /aunts and second cousins would also show up from time to time. Why? My grandma and her two sisters (Betsy and Gert Sybesma) really knew how to cook and would make an awesome dinner for all of us. They never wanted anything any help and often would refuse help in even washing the dishes afterwords. It was her way to keep the family together and in touch. That is one thing I miss living so far away from my parents and brother (when he was alive) or even my in-laws that routine weekly meetings are not possible.
I attribute a lot of my love of cooking or desire to cook well for one’s family to her. My grandma set the bar really high when it came to cooking, and while she never ventured out to many different ethnic dishes other than Dutch, she cooked what she did excellent. One of the dishes that was often included every Sunday was 7-Layer Salad, a lettuce side salad that featured bacon , cheese, peas, and a mayo-based dressing. I was never a fan of the hard-boiled egg layer, but that was easily remedied. There are a number of her recipes that have been lost — like her famous Taco Salad, but I wanted to make sure this one was not. Even better, I converted it to be a new low carb favorite.