The acetoacetic ester synthesis allows for the conversion of ethyl acetoacetate into a methyl ketone with one or two alkyl groups on the alpha carbon.
Step 1: Deprotonation with ethoxide
Step 2: Alkylation via and SN2 Reaction
3) Hydrolysis and decarboxylation
Addition of a second alky group
After the first step and additional alkyl group can be added prior to the decarboxylation step. Overall this allows for the addition of two different alkyl groups.