Ruth Stoller, our proprietor Bill’s mother, was born Oct. 26, 1915 in Portland, Oregon. In 1945, she married Harvey Stoller, and together they moved to the Dayton area, where she spent the next 48 years farming, raising five children, and thoughtfully preserving Yamhill County’s history.

One of the most loved Stoller family traditions was for Ruth to make her spice cake for birthdays and family celebrations. The cake itself is delicious with flavors of cinnamon and nutmeg, but what made it an unforgettable time-honored family tradition is that Ruth loved to present the cake in the shape of a lamb from a vintage tin. It also happens to be Bill’s favorite, and his sister, Nancy, still makes it for the family every Easter.

In honor of Ruth’s upcoming birthday and the release of our fall wines, we wanted to share a piece of the family heritage. Enjoy!



Spice Cake

  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 C flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 C shortening
  • 1 C white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 C unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 C raisins and/or roughly chopped walnuts, optional

Vintage Bakery Style Frosting

  • 1/2 C shortening
  • 1 lb powdered sugar
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 Tbsp cake flour
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 Tbsp milk


Spice Cake


Heat oven to 350° Fahrenheit

Heavily grease bottoms and sides of two 8-inch cake pans, or vintage lamb tin if you’re feeling nostalgic, with shortening. Coat pans with flour by sifting a little into each pan and shaking vigorously so there is a film of flour over the bottoms and sides, dumping out any surplus.


Sift together the dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside. Cream the egg and shortening until soft and fluffy. Mix baking soda and applesauce together and add to the shortening mixture. Slowly incorporate the dry ingredients until combined. If desired, fold in raisins and/or walnuts.


Pour batter evenly into prepared cake pans. Bake for 1 hour or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center of the cake. Cool cakes thoroughly on a wire rack before frosting.


while the cake cools, start the frosting. Beat shortening, vanilla, and salt in a medium bowl on high speed until light and fluffy.


Switch the mixer to low speed, add the egg whites and blend well.


Turn the mixer back to high and add the flour, vanilla, and 1 TBSP of milk at a time until thoroughly blended and the frosting is smooth and fluffy, about 2 minutes.


Level tops of cakes as needed. Frost with vintage frosting, and sprinkle walnuts around the sides, if desired.