Photo: Jim Franco; Styling: Lydia Degaris Pursell
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Beat butter at medium speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer until light and fluffy. Gradually add sugar, beating until blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended after each addition. Add food coloring and vanilla, beating until blended.
2. Whisk together flour and next 4 ingredients; add to butter mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition. Spoon batter into 4 greased and floured 8-inch round cake pans.
3. Bake all pans at the same time, with 2 pans on top rack and 2 pans on bottom rack, at 350° for 10 minutes; rotate pans, and bake 10 to 12 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks, and cool completely (about 1 hour).
4. Spread about 1 cup Coconut-Cream Cheese Frosting between cake layers; spread remaining frosting on top and sides of cake.