It seems the word cuisine means the practices and traditions associated with a specific culture.Cuisines today are influenced by the ingredients locally available and through trade.I certainly agree with this viewpoint.Definetely food of a certain place was characterized by whatever grew or was reared but as transportation became cheaper and easier people could also relish eating something not grown in their own soil.
Assam is a land of mixed culture.And I have read from many sources that the cuisine of this land is influenced by neighbouring states and neighbouring countries (i.e.Burma,Thailand).The other day i was searching for the English name of Lai Xaak and I ended up searching in a foreign site which through its website sells greens grown in japan,vietnam,korea,china.I really dont know if it grows in any other state of India.
History of this region cites that visitors to this region of the country has mostly been from South East Asian countries which perhaps accounts for their influence in the cuisine.The manner in which gravy(watery) in these countries are prepared is very much similiar to ours.The gravy will neither be rich in oil nor onions .
The little spices that are used could possibly be the influence of the neighboruing states.
Rice is the staple food of Assam.Mostly the people are non-vegetarian.But then a wide range of vegetables and greens are found in our state and a wide range of vegetarian dishes are also prepared.If you happen to visit a restaurant for Assamese Cuisine you will possibly be served Khar anja(dish made with raw papaya ),Masor Tenga(a sour fish curry),Manxo(preferably Duck meat),Bengena Pura,Mati Mahor Dal(Black Gram).I am citing only the possibilities.
Assamese Food owes more to the combination of various vegetables rather than spice.The combination of the vegetables with meat ,fish adds flavour to the respective dishes without the need of spice other than ginger garlic.
Health Conscious?Try assamese food without a second thought.