My companion in this extreme and crazy low-carb diet is Carrie. It’s her birthday this week, so I researched some more sweets that actually sounded good and that were low in carbs (no flour and no sugar). The first one I found was a chocolate rum pie, and rather than use sugar, I bought some stevia, with which I will be experimenting this week. Unlike other sugar substitutes that are chemically altered forms of sugar, stevia is actually a sweet plant, which they’ve concocted into powder or liquid form to add to desserts, or coffee/tea (mine is in powder form from TJ’s). Stevia does have a slightly bitter taste, so it’s best to use it in things that may already have a bit of bitterness to them, like chocolate or coffee.

When I first tasted the chocolate mixture with stevia, I was a little disappointed, but I think once it got cooked and the other flavors came out, it actually tasted pretty great. I think I may actually like the inclusion of stevia over actual sugar. The pie wasn’t overly sweet, which allowed for the chocolate and rum flavor to really come out. I also used the same crust recipe that I found with last week’s cashew “cheese” cake.

Low-Carb Chocolate Rum Pie

1/2 cup raw almonds (pecan or walnuts will also work)
1/2 cup soft dates (got mine at Wholefoods’ bulk nuts section)
¼ tsp salt

1 ½ cup heavy cream, divided
4 tablespoon water, divided
3 ounce unsweetened baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup stevia (or 3/4 cup sugar)
 2 teaspoons rum
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  1. Soak cashews in water for at least 5 hours. Overnight is best.
  2. Place nuts and dates in a food processor with salt and pulse to chop until they are to your desired fineness (process a finer crust longer than a chunky one). Test the crust by spooning out a small amount of mixture and rolling it in your hands. If the ingredients hold together, your crust is perfect. Scoop out crust mixture into a pie pan and press firmly, making sure that the edges are well packed and that the base is relatively even throughout.
  3. Place 3/4 cup of the cream, 2 tablespoons of the water, chocolate and cocoa powder in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking, until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from heat; set aside.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk egg yolks, 1/4 cup cream, remaining 2 tablespoons water and the stevia  together until blended. Whisk chocolate mixture until smooth. Gradually whisk one-third of the chocolate mixture into the egg-yolk mixture; add to saucepan with remaining chocolate mixture and whisk to combine. Return to heat and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly for 3 minutes (DO NOT OVERCOOK). Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Stir in rum and vanilla extract.
  5. In a medium bowl, with an electric mixer on medium, beat remaining 1/2 cup cream to soft peaks. Fold in chocolate mixture, folding just until blended and no streaks appear. Pour into prepared pie crust and smooth top. Chill until set, at least 4 hours.