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poach 1 (pōch)
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tr.v. poached, poach·ing, poach·es
To cook in a boiling or simmering liquid: Poach the fish in wine.

[Back-formation from Middle English poched, poached, from poche, dish of poached eggs, from Old French, from past participle of pochier, to poach eggs, from poche, pocket, bag (from the appearance of poached eggs, in which the yolk is enclosed by the white), of Germanic origin.]

poacha·ble adj.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
poach 2 (pōch)
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v. poached, poach·ing, poach·es
v.intr.
1. To take fish or game illegally, especially by trespassing on another's property.
2.
a. To take or appropriate something unfairly or illegally.
b. To encroach on another person's rights or responsibilities: felt the guys in accounting were poaching on his turf.
c. Sports To play a ball out of turn or in another's territory, as in doubles tennis.
3. To become muddy or broken up from being trampled. Used of land.
4. To sink into soft earth when walking.
v.tr.
1. To take (fish or game) illegally, especially by trespassing on another's property.
2.
a. To take or appropriate unfairly or illegally: poaching another firm's best employees.
b. Sports To play (a ball) out of turn or in another's territory.
3. To make (land) muddy or broken up by trampling.

[Early Modern English poche, poach, to poke, probe, intrude, poach (game), from Middle French pocher, to poke (in the eye), from Old French pochier, to poke, gouge, from poche, bag, pouch (from the resemblance of an empty eye socket to a pouch), of Germanic origin; akin to Old North French poke; see POKE3.]

poacha·ble adj.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

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