Here’s one for the tahini lovers! And if you’re not a tahini fanatic, don’t worry, the flavors in this velvety pie meld into something kind of indescribable. On first bite, this pie has been known to fool people into thinking it’s a peanut butter cream pie. But then the tastebuds realize it’s something else. And if you don’t tell, your guests will be guessing for quite a while. That’s my kind of dessert. A dessert with complexity and mystery! And a rich dessert, involving lots of cream. (Though if you’re not a fan of cream don’t worry, you can substitute avocado for a totally vegan version, the recipe for that one is over on my blog.
This is a gluten-free, no-bake dessert. The filling is simple enough: chocolate, tahini, and cream. And the crust is not your typical pie crust. It’s a no-bake press-in crust that is so tasty it’s quite hard not to eat it right out of the bowl. And it’s pretty healthy stuff to boot, with a nice crisp from the coconut.
Sometimes you want to spend hours working away in the kitchen on a masterpiece dessert, and sometimes you don’t. This is an easy option for those days when you don’t feel like turning the oven on. But while it requires little work, it’s a unique pie whose nutty flavor and creamy texture will likely be cause for conversation. Despite feeling rich and indulgent, it’s actually relatively healthy. In fact, if you’re using organic whipping cream (which is significantly higher in omega 3s), I’d say that all in all, this is a relatively good-for-you dessert: low on the glycemic index, high in nutrients, minerals, and antioxidants from the dark chocolate and tahini, and full of wholesome goodness in the crust.
I experimented with many different versions of this pie. They were all delicious and smooth-textured. So what that showed me is that you can adjust the filling ingredient amounts fairly easily in order to suit your personal taste. For instance, you may want to omit the maple syrup altogether if you don’t want too much sweetness. (It will largely depend on the chocolate you use). Some dark chocolates are quite sweet while others barely have any sweetness. I used a very dark chocolate with low sugar content and I found that adding one tablespoon of maple syrup was perfect. Also, some tahinis have a very strong flavor and you’ll find 1/2 cup is sufficient. However, I’ve used other varieties that are more mild tasting and in this case, I tend to add a couple extra tablespoonfuls. It’s a good idea to mix everything together as described below, and then to taste the filling before you pour it into the crust. You can then make slight adjustments to suit your taste. Enjoy!
No-Bake Tahini Chocolate Mousse Pie
- For the No-Bake Crust:
- 1/2 cup pecans
- 1/2 cup rolled oats (not instant oats)
- 1/2 cup toasted unsweetened coconut
- 1/4 cup melted coconut oil (preferably neutral-tasting or refined)
- 5 dates
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tsp freshly grated organic orange zest (optional)
- 1/8 tsp salt
- For the Filling:
- 100 grams (3.5 oz) dark chocolate
- 1/2 cup tahini (sesame paste)
- 2 cups organic heavy cream, whipped to soft peaks
- 2 Tbsp maple syrup (if needed, depends on sweetness of chocolate)
- 1 Tbsp Grand Marnier (optional)
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 tsp salt
- For the Optional Garnish:
- 1 Tbsp sesame seeds
- To begin, make the crust. Pour a cup of boiling water over the 5 dates. Let them absorb the water and soften for about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, place the pecans, toasted coconut, rolled oats, and salt into a food processor and pulse several times, until a crumbly mixture is obtained. There can still be small bits of oats and coconut. Add the drained, softened dates, melted coconut oil, grated orange zest, and 1 Tbsp maple syrup. Pulse until the mixture turns into a dough that comes together when you squeeze it between your fingers. Pour into an oiled 8-inch pie or tart plate and press into the bottom and sides of the plate. You pie crust is now ready for the filling.
- Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or a metal bowl placed on top of a pot of simmering water. Allow it to cool (lukewarm is fine but it shouldn’t be hot). Whip the cream to soft peaks. (Don’t over-whip). Remove 1/2 cup of the whipped cream and place aside for garnish. Add the tahini and salt to the large bowl of cream and whisk it in well. Next, fold in the cooled, melted chocolate. Add the vanilla, and Grand Marnier, and mix well. When the mixture is smooth and uniform, taste it. If needed, add one tablespoon of maple syrup and a pinch more salt. Once you are happy with the flavor, pour the filling into the prepared pie crust. Smooth the top with a spatula and place the pie in the fridge for at least 2 hours to cool and set.
- Before serving, whip the remaining 1/2 cup of cream to stiff peaks. Add 1 Tbsp maple syrup. Pipe dollops of whipped cream all around the outer edge of the pie and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve cold.
Aube Giroux is a food writer and filmmaker who shares her love of cooking on her farm-to-table blog, Kitchen Vignettes.
Aube is a passionate organic gardener and home cook who likes to share the stories of how food gets to our dinner plates. Her work has been shown on television and at international film festivals. Her web series has been nominated for multiple James Beard Awards for Best Video Webcast (On Location). In 2012, she was the recipient of Saveur Magazine’s Best Food Blog award in the video category.