If something is küpsetatud, it is baked or roasted, like this skewered piggy and his dismembered friend, who were on offer at last weekend's Keskaja turg – Medieval Fair in Tallinn's Raekoja plats.
You could also say that Estonia and all of its inhabitants, animal and vegetable, are currently baking (küpsevad), due to the long heat-spell, drought, as well as huge risk and incidence of forest fires.
Küpse is also used in slang: if someone is küpse, they have been found out, busted, and are in for it, so to speak. (Töötähtaeg on ületatud, nüüd olen küpse. I've passed my deadline, now I'm toast.) Toast is actually keeping in thematic context, just as "I'm dead", in the sense of being in trouble is the same as the expression kutu. Things, like car parts, can also "die": Automootor on kutu. Or küpse.
But before something is downright roasted, toasted or baked (küpsekartul – baked potato), it is usually simply ripe (küps tomat). A person, having reached maturity is also said to be küps, hopefully ripe and ready for whatever life has in store.
UV-levels and temperatures have recently hit record highs in Estonia and so the küps-look, desired by many, is quite effortless to achieve. This has also been referred to as the broiler, or grill-kana look (roasted chicken). Estonians should seriously think more about befriending sunscreen, in order to avoid the not-so-glamorous other side of küpse... Which may or may not include a possible side of mulgikapsad, Mulgi cabbage, as seen above (sauerkraut, fatty pork and pearl barley).
Text and photo: Riina Kindlam, Tallinn