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Today is March 30

National Doctors’ Day is held every year on March 30th in the United States. It is a day to celebrate the contribution of physicians who serve our country by caring for its’ citizens. The first Doctor’s Day observance was March 30, 1933 in Winder, Georgia.  Eudora Brown Almond, wife of Dr. Charles B. Almond, decided to set aside a day to honor physicians. This first observance included the mailing greeting cards and placing flowers on graves of deceased doctors. On March 30, 1958, a Resolution Commemorating Doctors’ Day was adopted by the United States House of Representatives. In 1990, legislation was introduced in the House and Senate to establish a national Doctor’s Day. Following overwhelming approval by the United States Senate and the House of Representatives, on October 30, 1990, President George Bush signed S.J. RES. #366 (which became Public Law 101-473) designating March 30th as “National Doctor’s Day.”

For more information visit https://www.doctorsday.org/

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8 tips for dyeing Easter eggs

Coloring eggs is a beloved Easter tradition. Eggs long have been symbols of fertility and rebirth, making them fitting icons for spring.

One story links eggs to Easter as well. According to some religious scholars, Mary Magdalene, the woman who was the first person to see Jesus Christ after His resurrection, was holding a plain egg in her hand while waiting for the emperor to share the good news. The emperor then told her that Jesus’ resurrection was as improbable as that egg suddenly blushing. The egg then turned red.

Dyeing eggs is an entertaining activity, but one that also may have some religious significance. Many families will color eggs this Easter, and these guidelines can make the process go smoothly.

  • Wait until just before coloring to hard-boil eggs. Good Housekeeping recommends boiling eggs for 11 minutes for a hard boil. Do not chill the eggs afterward; warm eggs absorb color more effectively for more vivid results.
  • Egg dye can stain furniture, clothing or tablecloths. Therefore, dress in clothing that you’re not worried about staining. Also, cover work surfaces with an old tablecloth and newspapers to soak up any spills.
  • Make a drying rack to ensure that eggs will dry evenly. This can be a rimmed cookie sheet lined with layers of paper towels to absorb any excess dye that runs off the eggs. Or push pins into thick foam board and place the eggs on top to allow air to circulate.
  • Consider using glass bowls or ceramic mugs to house the colored dye solutions. These vessels are more sturdy than plastic cups, and less likely to be overturned by eager young hands.
  • Scissor-style tongs are ideal tools for retrieving eggs from the dye. Eggs tend to slide off of the spoons or wire rings provided in kits, leading to splashing and kids dunking their fingers in to grab eggs.
  • Stir dyeing cups often to guarantee consistent color.
  • Use electrical tape to make patterns on Easter eggs. Dip the eggs and let dry. Afterwards, remove the tape to reveal the designs.
  • If food coloring-based dyes seem too messy, use watercolor paint sets and allow everyone to get creative.

While some people may want to use Easter eggs for recipes later on, it may be safer to boil up a fresh batch of eggs for that purpose, even if it seems wasteful. According to Emily Rubin, RD, LDN of the Thomas Jefferson University Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, “hard-boiled eggs should be refrigerated within two hours of cooking and discarded if left out for more than two hours at room temperature.” Chances are it may take two hours or more for children to find hard-boiled eggs hidden by the Easter bunny

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Enjoy hot cross buns this Easter

A number of foods are enjoyed during Easter celebrations, from hard-boiled eggs to ham to roasted lamb. Sweets such as candies and chocolates also take center stage on Easter Sunday. In addition to these traditional favorites, hot cross buns have become must-haves for many Easter celebrants.

Hot cross buns are yeast-based sweet buns that are lightly spiced and studded with raisins or currants. The tops are marked with a cross that is often piped with icing. While there’s no clear explanation of how hot cross buns came to be, there are indications that they once were reserved only for Good Friday. Others say they were consumed throughout Lent. The cross is a Christian symbol of the crucifixion and Christ himself.

Hot cross buns are soft and sweet, and they’re easily created. Enjoy this recipe, courtesy of King Arthur Flour.

Hot Cross Buns

Yield 12 to 14 buns

Buns

1/4 cup apple juice or rum

1/2 cup mixed dried fruit

1/2 cup raisins or dried currants

1 1/4 cups milk, room temperature

2 large eggs, plus 1 egg yolk (save the white for the topping)

6 tablespoons butter, room temperature

2 teaspoons instant yeast

1/4 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves or allspice

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 3/4 teaspoons salt

1 tablespoon baking powder

4 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

Topping

1 large egg white, reserved from above

1 tablespoon milk

Icing

1 cup + 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Pinch of salt

4 teaspoons milk, or enough to make a thick, pipeable icing

Lightly grease a 10″ square pan or 9″ x 13″ pan.

Mix the rum or apple juice with the dried fruit and raisins, cover with plastic wrap and microwave briefly, just until the fruit and liquid are very warm and the plastic starts to “shrink wrap” itself over the top of the bowl. Set aside to cool to room temperature. Note: If you worry about using plastic wrap in your microwave, simply cover the bowl with a glass lid.

When the fruit is cool, mix together all of the dough ingredients (including the eggs and egg yolk from the separated egg); hold out the fruit for the time being. Knead the mixture, using an electric mixer or bread machine, until the dough is soft and elastic. It’ll be very slack, sticking to the bottom of the bowl and your hands as you work with it (greasing your hands helps). Mix in the fruit and any liquid not absorbed.

Let the dough rise for 1 hour, covered. It should become puffy, though may not double in bulk.

Divide the dough into billiard ball-sized pieces, about 33/4 ounces each. A heaped muffin scoop (about 1/3 cup) makes about the right portion. You’ll make 12 to 14 buns. Use your greased hands to round them into balls. Arrange them in the prepared pan.

Cover the pan, and let the buns rise for 1 hour, or until they’ve puffed up and are touching one another. While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 375 F.

Whisk together the reserved egg white and milk, and brush it over the buns.

Bake the buns for 20 minutes, until they’re golden brown. Remove from the oven, carefully turn the buns out of the pan (they should come out in one large piece), and transfer them to a rack to cool.

Mix together the icing ingredients, and when the buns are completely cool, pipe it in a cross shape atop each bun.