I don't do a lot of scratch baking but this was requested for a special birthday. Agree with what's been written: it's a production and will take hours, but worth it. I did NOT add extra chocolate to the cake batter and stuck to the recipe. Had no trouble getting the cakes out of the pans, having made sure to grease & flour generously. The layers didn't rise as much as I expected, but they were respectable in size. I had no cake flour, nor could I find any in stores, so I substituted using 2 Tbs. cornstarch + just under a cup of all-purpose flour (found that online). For the frosting, I took advice of reviewers & made 1-1/2 times the amount. Can't imagine working with less than that. I toasted the coconut & the chopped pecans. Nice flavor. Careful not to burn the coconut-it browns quickly. Heating the frosting ingredients in a saucepan I had to raise the heat. If I'd kept it at low, as directed, I'd still be waiting for it to thicken. Boiling was absolutely necessary, stirring constantly, and it thickened nicely. Even more so after adding the coconut & pecans. I put it in the fridge to speed up the cooling, and because time was short, the frosting was still somewhat warm when I applied it to the cake but that was fine. The chocolate drizzle didn't work at all. It needs far more fat (I used butter, not shortening & needed at least 1-2 Tbsp plus another square of chocolate). Then I could drizzle it over the top of the cake but had trouble trying to drizzle down the sides.
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I don't do a lot of scratch baking but this was requested for a special birthday. Agree with...