Chef's Corner: Rice dish a Middle Eastern favorite

Sylvia Saad takes pride in her cooking. She says that she’d never serve customers anything she wouldn’t feed her family.

The owner of Mario’s Restaurant & Pop on Broadway, Saad knows her customers. She cooks, waits on tables and talks to everyone who walks in the restaurant. The Jerusalem-born Saad and her husband, George, moved to Columbus 30 years ago. The restaurant is named for their second-born son, Mario, who renovated the space above his father’s clothing store.

Saad demonstrates how to make Chicken and mushrooms over rice, a popular dish, in an online video at

Here is the recipe:


4 chicken breasts, boned and skinned

Salt, garlic powder and pepper to taste

Flour to coat chicken

Vegetable oil to cook the chicken

5-6 garlic cloves, sliced very thin

1/2 pound of fresh sliced mushrooms

Juice of 1/2 lemon

1/4 cup of white or blush wine

Chicken base or bouillon

2 cups water

Cooked rice

Rinse chicken breasts and pat dry. Season the chicken with salt, garlic powder and pepper. Dredge in flour and coat thoroughly.

Coat the bottom of your skillet with oil. When the skillet is hot, drop in chicken breasts.

While the chicken is cooking, put a little vegetable oil in a medium saucepan. When it is hot, drop in the garlic. Be careful to not let the garlic burn. As it caramelizes, put in the mushrooms. Add a little salt and saute.

Add the lemon juice and the wine. Add the water, then add the chicken base or bouillon to taste.

When the chicken is almost done, put the chicken in the saucepan and let it simmer for 40 minutes.

Put the cooked rice on a plate and spoon the chicken and mushrooms mixture on top.


Look for a new instructional Chef’s Corner video each Wednesday

March 18: How to make hummus.

March 25: How to make fattoush salad.

Today: How to make chicken with mushroom sauce over rice.

April 8: How to make a kefta sandwich.