***Cake*** 1 1/2 cup butter 3/4 cup water 4 ounces white chocolate, chopped 1 1/2 cup buttermilk 4 large eggs, lightly beaten 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided 1 cup chopped pecans, toasted 2 1/4 cups sugar 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda ***White Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting*** 4 ounces white chocolate, chopped 11 ounces cream cheese, softened 1/3 cup butter, softened 6 1/2 cups sifted powdered sugar 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 tablespoon bourbon (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 3 9-inch cake pans.
Bring butter and water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Remove from heat and add chocolate. Stir until chocolate melts. Add in buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla. Set aside.
Toss 1/2 cup flour with toasted pecans to coat. Set aside.
Whisk or sift together remaining flour, sugar, and baking soda in a large mixing bowl. Gradually add white chocolate mixture, stirring just until combined. Fold in pecans (Batter will be thin). Pour into pans.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool cakes on wire rack 10 minutes before removing from pans. Cool completely on wire rack.
For Frosting: Melt white chocolate in a large bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water. Stir frequently and remove from heat while there are still a few chunks left. Residual heat will melt the remaining bits. Cool 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Beat the cream cheese and butter together with an electric mixer until creamy and smooth. Gradually add the melted white chocolate, beating constantly. Slowly add powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Stir in vanilla and bourbon (if using).
Spread frosting between cake layers and on top and sides of cake. Garnish as desired. Store in refrigerator.