Here's what you need to do:
Grease and flour three 9 inch, round cake pans. Set aside.
Combine the baking soda and buttermilk. Set aside.
Cream together the sugar, 1/2 cup butter, 1/2 cup oil and 1/2 cup of shortening.
Add the egg yolks one at a time. Beat about 1 minute between each addition.
Add the flour alternately...with buttermilk mixture...beginning and ending with the flour.
Stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla. Set aside.
Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
Add 1/3 of the egg whites.
Fold into the batter.
Add in the remaining whites. Fold those in.
Add 1 cup pecans and 1 cup of coconut.
Gently fold those in so you don't lose the air from the batter.
Divide the batter equally between the 3 prepared pans.
Bake in the preheated 325° oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in the pans for 15 minutes before removing from the pan.
Remove from pans and continue cooling on a wire rack. Make sure the cake has completely cooled before frosting.
For the Frosting:
Beat together the cream cheese, 1/2 cup butter and 1 teaspoon vanilla.
STOP the mixer. Add the confectioners' sugar.
SLOWLY start the mixer...unless of course you like being covered with confectioners sugar...LOL. Once the sugar is mixed in, raise the speed of the mixer and continue beating until fluffy. Set aside.
Place the ½ cup of coconut in a skillet.
Toast the coconut stirring occasionally over medium heat until it begins to brown.
Place 1 layer of the cake on the cake plate. Use 3 strips of parchment or waxed paper under the edges of the cake so that the cake plate is covered. Spread a thin layer of the frosting on top of the cake.
Top with the second layer.
Frost with a thin layer of frosting.
Add the third layer.
Spread the remaining frosting on the top and sides of the cake.
Gently press the 1 cup of chopped pecans onto the side of the cake.
Sprinkle the toasted coconut on the top of the cake.
Gently warm cut piece just prior to serving for heavenly deliciousness!
Now, I know that this recipe is very time entailed...but it is so very worth it! I promise you won't be sorry your took the time to make this cake!