To save time (and backache) I made the cake from a box mix, however, the coconut topping was made from scratch. I cooled the cake slightly and spread with topping.
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup heavy cream or half and half
1 t vanilla
1 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Combine sugar, butter and cream in a medium saucepan on medium low heat. Bring to a simmer and cook one minute. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla, coconut and walnuts. Cool slightly.
Spread on top of warm cake.