Getting to know Karan Vaidya better!

Karan Vaidya, the Honorary Consul for the Republic of Latvia in Nepal (the youngest appointed in the world, till date), is also the Founder of Moksh Hospitality and the Vice-President of Vaidya Group. Currently, he is also a board member at the SOS Children’s Villages of Nepal and a Rotarian at the Rotary Club of Kathmandu Mid- Town.

Karan was born in Nepal, schooled in India and got his further education from the United States and United Kingdom. He graduated with honours as an Engineer from Purdue University, USA and then went on to attain his MBA degree from the prestigious MIT and Tsinghua University, where he specialized in the development of Nepal through specialized sectors such as hospitality and education.

During his time abroad, Vaidya has worked in various multinational companies in the US, UK, Canada and Singapore in sectors ranging from automobiles to telecommunications to financial markets. Regardless of his time abroad, he has always been deeply connected to his roots in Nepal. He had always envisioned gathering all the international experience and knowledge he could and bringing it back home in order to implement them towards Nepal’s development and progress.

The combination of his passions, his desire to develop Nepal and his international experience brought him back to the country where he has been tirelessly working towards its development through entrepreneurship as well as aiding the continuation of his family conglomerate. At a personal level, he is a highly motivated individual, driven by his aspiration to empower and motivate others, especially the youth of Nepal.

What brought you back to Nepal?

Right after my MBA, I was recruited by a Toronto-based telecommunication company to head their business development in Asia out of Singapore. After almost a year with them, the devastating earthquake of 2015 hit us, and I just could not stay out of Nepal while our country was trying to save itself from crumbling. So, I left everything and came back home. I always wanted to come back to Nepal after gathering as much experience I could from the world. The earthquake just expedited my return and in a way of an unseen benefit, I am glad it did.

You seem to be doing many things at the same time, how do you manage it all?

I do have a tendency to overstretch myself but that has always led me to push my boundaries every day. Key to managing your life is always time management. Having been educated in a boarding school, time management has been ingrained in my mind. We all have 24 hours in a day, but some can use that same time and reach great heights while others use the same 24 hours and remain where they are. People who have the ability to manage their time and make the most of their days have always inspired me.

The most important thing for me in order to manage my time every day is to limit distractions (of which we have too many, especially in today’s world) and to plan each day diligently so that I do not even get a chance to waste time. Additionally, in terms of entrepreneurship and running businesses, it is important to know that you have your limits and hence you need to be able to trust your people and delegate work to them without having to micromanage them.

What is your ideal day like?

I am glad you said ideal, because definitely some days are harder than others. Ideally, I like to wake up by 4:45am (something that Robin Sharma’s book – 5am Club taught me). This gives me 4 hours to myself before office hours begin. I read for an hour while sipping my coffee then head to the gym.

After a good workout, I am ready to tackle the day. I schedule my days in follow-up blocks and 90-minute-deep work blocks (adapted from another great book – Deep Work by Cal Newport regarding which I have given talks in schools as well). After work, I have scheduled some language classes (currently improving my Mandarin) and other days I save time for social meetings. At night, I make sure to leave my smartphone in my car (another trick I use and talk about in my Digital Detox talks), and end the night with reading and writing. I am generally fast asleep by 9:30 to 10 pm.

It is difficult to be motivated to that level, what is your secret?

It is not easy to stay perpetually motivated. I believe in the power of routine and habits more than motivation. Motivation should be the spark that makes you follow the right path but it is habits that make sure you stay on track. I will not call it a secret, but there is one thing that I have learnt along the way. If you have a pursuit, a vision, a goal- it is important to always start with why you are doing what you are doing. It is incredibly powerful to know your purpose for your visions. If you have, a strong why then the how and what will come to you.

Could you give a tip for someone trying to stick to one’s fitness New Year resolution?

One trick that I teach during my digital detox talks is the smartphone trick. For example, if you want to work out in the mornings and you cannot get yourself out of bed on time, try this. Charge your smartphone outside your room, next to your yoga mat or running shoes. People nowadays are so entrapped by their phones that this trick will create a positive twist to your daily habit loop. Every morning, you have this need to check your phone for notifications. When you charge your phone close to fitness-related triggers, your need to check your phone will push you to go get it. Once you are near a fitness trigger like your running shoes, it will be easier to push yourself to go for that run. I talk about this in detail in my Digital Detox talks that are linked on my Instagram(@karan.vaiidya).

You have been doing motivational speaking for youth in Nepal and have talked a lot of digital detoxing. Could you briefly guide us through that?

We live in a world where devices dictate everything. You think you have control over your smartphone, but I can assure you, for most of us our devices control us. As I am into every aspect of wellness, I thought it was important to raise awareness regarding digital wellness as well. Most apps use inherent human habit loops to get you addicted to them. They manipulate our dopamine hormone – the “feel-good” hormone to keep us glued to our devices.

Tell us more about your aspiration to empower and motivate the youth of Nepal.

What motivates me is empowering people, especially our youth. They are the future of the country and Nepal is at the turn of an era where the global dynamics are shifting towards Asia. Therefore, I believe it is extremely important to guide them towards the right path by teaching them how they can improve themselves.

As I am always trying to learn and implement habits and actions to improve myself every day, I like to share, whatever I learn along the way. Especially, with those who are just beginning their journey, so that they also join me in this constant pursuit to be the best version of ourselves.

You do a lot of reading, what is one book you would recommend to the readers?

There are so many books I would like to recommend, but one that has positively affected me and kept me strong in the worst of times is Viktor Frankl’s “Man’s Search for Meaning”. This book chronicles his experience as a prisoner in a Nazi Concentration Camp during World War II. More than just the story, it captures the human soul and what it means to be human and even when everything is taken from us, it reminds us that we still have the freedom to choose our attitude in any given situation, and therein lies our greatest power.

Something people do not know about you is your passion for cooking. Where did it all begin and what is cooking like for you?

Cooking is one thing that I know that I have innately loved. One of my first childhood memories is that of me cooking. When I was around 5 years old, my school showed us how to make custard in their kitchen. I was so enthralled by it that I ran back home and made some of my own. I could not even reach the stovetop, so I stood on a stool and used a double boiler to make it.

Unfortunately, I have not been able to do as much cooking as I would like to. However, the lockdowns did give me an opportunity to get more into that part of me. To me, cooking feels like meditation. Once I have started the process, I am totally consumed

by it and I am 100% in that present moment which feels exhilarating. Moreover, it is always good to see the joy in people’s faces when they have tasted what you have made. Therefore, cooking will always have a special place in my life.

Tell us about something you love to cook?

I love cooking anything from Newari to Italian to French. I started self-learning from classical French cooking using my mother’s old cookbook. One recipe that comes to mind is Duck à l' Orange. It is a whole roast duck recipe with an orange-based citrusy sauce. The fattiness of the duck combined with the sweet-sourness of the citrus creates a perfect balance of flavours resulting is an excellent dish that is perfect for special occasions.



(A Recipe by Karan Vaidya)


1 Whole Duck (2-3 kg)

Spice Rub Mix (1 tbsp each)


Jasmine Tea

Fennel Seeds

Star Anise


Chili Powder

Black Pepper


1 cup Chicken Stock

½ cup Sugar

½ cup Balsamic Vinegar

2 tbsp Fresh Orange Juice

2 tbsp Lemon Juice

2 tbsp Unsalted Butter

Zest of 1 Orange



Remove the wings, neck, excess fat and skin from the whole duck.

Perforate the skin with a sharp knife, especially the fattiest areas and score the skin in a criss-cross pattern.

Bring a large pot of water to boil (large enough to dip the whole duck).

Dip the duck into the boiling water for 2 minutes, remove it, and let it dry on a baking rack with the breast side up. (This causes the skin to contract and the outer fat to start melting; it will make the skin of the duck crisper, and the duck less fatty)

Prepare the Spice Rub Mix by grinding all the ingredients into powder.

Rub the insides and outsides of the duck with the Spice Rub Mix. (It is best to do the duck preparation on the night before and left overnight in the refrigerator. This allows the duck to air dry and the spice and seasoning to sink into the meat)

• Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

• Make sure the Duck has been in room temperature for 20 minutes before putting in the oven.

• Put the whole duck on a wire rack on top of a baking tray and put it inside the oven. Put the extra duck trimmings in the baking tray. (You can use aluminium foil to prop up the duck in case you do not have a wire rack).

• Roast the duck in the oven for 2 hours at 180 degrees Celsius. At the 80-minute mark, remove the excess rendered fat from the baking tray.


Start during the 80-minute mark when you have removed the rendered fat from the baking tray.

Remove the duck trimmings and put the duck back into the oven.

In a saucepan, bring the chicken stock to boil and add the roasted duck trimmings to the reduced stock. (The duck trimmings and add it to the stock for an extra depth in flavour). Let the stock boil and reduce to half its quantity.

Preparation of the Gastrique While the stock is reducing, add the sugar to a different saucepan. Add quarter cup of water and place it over medium heat. Stir with a fork until syrup comes to a boil, then simmer without stirring until syrup is honey-coloured, roughly 6 minutes. Then continue cooking until syrup is a rich mahogany colour, about 4 minutes longer.

• Remove the Caramel from the heat and slowly add in the balsamic vinegar. Do it slowly so that the gastrique (the mixture) does not boil over.

• After stirring in the balsamic vinegar, place the gastrique back on the medium heat and bring it back to boil.

• Once boiling, reduce the heat and let it simmer and reduce for 2 minutes.

• In the reduced chicken stock, add the orange and lemon juice and bring to a simmer for 5 minutes.

• Slowly add the Gastrique to the sauce, a bit at a time. Keep tasting the sauce to make sure the Gastrique does not over power the sauce. It should be a perfect balance of sharpness and sweetness.

• Once satisfied with the balance, reduce the heat to the minimum and season the sauce with salt & pepper. Then add in the butter slowly making sure that the heat is at minimum and the sauce is not boiling. (you can check the consistency of the sauce by dipping a spoon in the sauce and seeing if it lightly coats the back of the spoon with ease and when you run your finger across the back of the spoon, the sauce should leave a clear path)

• On the side, peal and zest an orange and scrape of any white part from its inside. Blanche the cleaned Zest in boiling water for 2 minutes and remove it.

• Add the blanched Zest to the Sauce and let it simmer for one more minute.


After 2 hours in the oven, remove the Duck from the oven. Leave it on the wire rack and cover it with an aluminum foil for 15-minutes before carving and serving.

Tip: The internal temperature of the duck at the thighs and leg junction should be 82-85 degrees Celsius.

Gently carve the duck, making sure the skin does not fall off and serve it with the sauce.