NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – On The Dig, CBS2’s Elle McLogan unearths gems in local food and culture. In one past episode, she visited Ricas Pupusas & Mas, a Salvadorian restaurant in Queens where three generations of family come together in the kitchen.

In this update, she checks in with the Vargas family to hear how their business is doing amid the upheaval surrounding the coronavirus pandemic.

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These days, the restaurant depends on pickup and delivery orders, especially those placed directly by phone—the commission charged by delivery apps is too steep.

“We’re trying to transition into dining outside,” eldest daughter Amy Vargas said.

“Hopefully, it goes well because it hasn’t been that good. It’s hard,” her mother Irma said. “It’s very slow now.”

For Irma, it’s not an option to close the business she started alongside her mother Maria, husband Daniel, and four daughters, Amy, Abby, Ashbel, and Arashel.

“We have to keep going and be positive,” Irma said.

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The unforeseen impact of the coronavirus has forced members of the Vargas family to reimagine their roles at work.

Now that her grandmother Maria stays home for safety, Amy has taken charge of preparing the menu’s Mexican offerings, like tacos and burritos, while Abby takes care of the specialty pupusas, a Salvadorian staple. Ashbel is assistant chef, and Arashel cleans up.

“Me, as a mother, I’m amazed at the girls,” Irma said. “Without them, we wouldn’t be able to do it.”

In hardship, she finds gratitude.

“Maybe we’re not doing as good as we should, but we’re still happy. We’re happy to be together. We’re good together.”

Ricas Pupusas & Mas
47-55 47th Street
Woodside, NY 11377
(929) 296-0069

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What’s something few people know about but everybody should? Whatever it is, Elle McLogan is tracking it down on The Dig. Join her hunt for treasures hidden across our area. Follow Elle on Twitter and Instagram.

Elle McLogan