Britain is in the grip of cake mania. The Women's Institute, spiritual home of the iced occasion fruitcake, reported that interest in its baking courses was up 60 per cent in 2008; one online retailer said it was selling a cookie cutter every 15 minutes; and the nation is to be galvanized into action with the start of a National Baking Week. It is entirely to be expected, of course: in the current climate of gloom and doom, what more therapeutic activity could there be than baking? So Grub Street is reissuing two timeless classics in one elegant, redesigned hardback volume filled with delightful illustrations by Georgie Fearns. George and Cecilia's two little baking books Home Baked published in 1956 and Home-Made Cakes and Biscuits published in 1963 were listed by Elizabeth David in a Times article in 1971 as her favorite books on bread making. The books contain advice on equipment, flours to use and to avoid, baking and rising times and temperatures and everything the home baker can possible want to know. There are recipes for wholemeal bread, white bread, English tea breads and continental coffee breads such as croissants, Danish pastries, panettone, German apple cake and Russian Easter bread. The section on homemade cakes and biscuits contains recipes for basic cakes, fruit cakes, chocolate cakes, nut cakes, spicy cakes, pastries, biscuits and yeast cakes as well as icings and fillings.