Recipe, words and photos by Karen Swan
Oh this is good. So very, very, very good.
I thought I’d find it hard to top the incredible Chocolate Raspberry Cake with chocolate Ganache from last year. I was wrong.
We managed to polish this beauty off in a mere 24 hours at my place; sometimes in it’s still frozen form (think amazing ice cream cake!) and sometimes, in it’s rich, soft, mousse-y and decadent form.
A few *cooking* notes:
1. I used dried dates that had been soaked in water for a little longer than they should so my crust mix was a little wet. If you use fresh medjool dates, adjust with a T of water if you think the crust is too dry.
2. Feel free to substitute walnuts or another nut of your liking for the pecans. Actually, if you need to go nut free, you could probably just up the quantity of coconut (I’ve not tried this but I’d love to know if you do!)
3. If you’re vegan, sub another sweetener for the honey.
4. I used a 24cm shallow pie dish lined with plastic wrap for easy removal/cutting. You can use a dish with a removable base, but you will find removing the pie from the dish easier if it’s lined with plastic or paper.
Crust (you will have left overs here, possibly enough for a second pie. I made a double batch so I could get a nice, thick crust. Freeze any leftovers for use another day)
2 cups dates – fresh or dried. Soak dried dates overnight before using.
2 cups shredded coconut
1 cup pecans
1/2 cup raw cacao or cocoa powder
1/2 tsp vanilla
3 ripe avocados
2 T honey
2 T melted coconut oil
3 T cacao or cocoa
1 tsp vanilla
1 regular tin of coconut milk, refrigerated overnight.
2 T icing sugar (optional, but delicious!)
Add the dates to the bowl of your food processor and pulse a few times to break them up a little
Then add the coconut and nuts and pulse a few times more.
Add the vanilla, cocoa and salt and process until the mixture resembles potting mix and is starting to clump.
Using damp hands, form the dough into a rough ball and put in a bowl.
Line your pie dish with plastic wrap or baking paper.
Divide the crust mix into roughly half and begin to press it into the pie dish.
If you feel you need a little more to thicken up the base or sides, add as necessary.
Cover the base with wrap and place in the freezer while you prepare the mousse filling.
(cover, date and freeze any leftover crust mix, or make them into brownies!)
Combine the avocados, honey, coconut oil, cacao, vanilla and salt in the bowl of your food processor and whizz around until smooth and there are no tell-tale chunks of green avocado!
Taste for chocolate-y-ness and add more cocoa if desired. Ditto on the sweetener (but remember the base is sweet and you’re about to take the mousse to a whole other level, so maybe hold off on the sweet!)
Open the tin of coconut milk and scrape out the thick, solid layer from the top of the tin (you’ll be left with a little liquid which you can reserve/freeze for later use.
Using a hand mixer or bench top mixer, whip the milk until it becomes airy and light. This can take some time, but you will get there!
If using the icing sugar, add this in just before you’re finished mixing and combine well.
Slowly fold the chocolate mix into the whipped cream until combined. (You may not need to use all the chocolate mix depending on the size/depth of your pie. Any leftovers can be put in little ramekins or cups and eaten as mousse on their own, or frozen for later use)
Remove the base from the freezer and pour in the mousse mix.
Sprinkle with extra coconut.
Return to the freezer and allow the mousse to set (at least an hour)
I found it easier to pre-slice the pie while it was still frozen (you can see it’s pretty solid in some of the shots).
It’s best to remove the pie at least 30 minutes before you want to eat it so the mousse has time to soften to the right consistency.
However, if you can’t wait, and really, who can blame you, expect a texture like a delicious ice cream cake!
But, may I suggest holding off, going and putting on a load of laundry or some other mind numbing task that can occupy half an hour and then come back for your reward……..
Soft, delicious mousse pie.