The eastern part of Bangladesh has strong influences from Northeast Indian states, such as Assam and Tripura. The main characteristic of this food is that it is mainly sweet and has a lot of uses of banana throats, raw papaya fruit, raw mango, urad lentils and grilled or smoked vegetables. The staples of Sylheti people are mainly rice and fish. Their choice and method of cooking is distinctly different to non-Sylhetis. Traditional foods include sour dishes, such as tengha (or tok) cooked with vegetables, including amra, defal, olives (belfoi), dewwaa, amshi, mango choti (aam choti), kul (boroi), hatkhora (or shatkora), ada zamir (ada lembu), and any other sour lemon-like tasty vegetable. Also many types of meat dishes, including chicken.
The region was an administrative and commercial bastion in South Asia during early Hindu and Buddhist kingdoms; and later Muslim sultanates. Mughlai cuisine developed in Bengal after the establishment of the province of Mughal Bengal in 1576, as part of the Mughal Empire. The city of Dhaka played an important role in influencing Bengali food with Mughal elements. The British Empire ruled the region for nearly two hundred years between the 18th and 20th centuries, during which the Bengal Renaissance shaped the emergence of modern Bengali cuisine. During the British Raj, Calcutta influenced many Bengali dishes. In the southeast, Arakan cuisine from Burma influenced dishes in Chittagong, particularly dried fish.