She will explain no, it's a family tradition from the days when her great-grandmother, still a little girl, was the only person not struck down by a disease, and had to feed the entire family with wretched cooking skills. Therefore, everyone in the family has to know how to cook.
Which is actually a family story from the days of the Spanish influenza. (My grandmother, actually, and she knew how to cook oatmeal and nothing else.) But I don't think I would have thought to throw it in, in other days.