Definition of poach verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

     

    poach

     verb
    verb
    BrE BrE//pəʊtʃ//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//poʊtʃ//
     
    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they poach
    BrE BrE//pəʊtʃ//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//poʊtʃ//
     
    he / she / it poaches
    BrE BrE//ˈpəʊtʃɪz//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈpoʊtʃɪz//
     
    past simple poached
    BrE BrE//pəʊtʃt//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//poʊtʃt//
     
    past participle poached
    BrE BrE//pəʊtʃt//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//poʊtʃt//
     
    -ing form poaching
    BrE BrE//ˈpəʊtʃɪŋ//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈpoʊtʃɪŋ//
     
    Ways of cooking, Committing crime
     
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  1. 1[transitive] poach something to cook food, especially fish, gently in a small amount of liquid poached salmon See related entries: Ways of cooking
  2. 2[transitive] poach something to cook an egg gently in nearly boiling water after removing its shell
  3. 3[transitive, intransitive] poach (something) to illegally hunt birds, animals or fish on somebody else’s property or without permission The elephants are poached for their tusks. Wordfinderchase, falconry, game, hunt, open season, pack, poach, prey, safari, trail See related entries: Committing crime
  4. 4[transitive, intransitive] poach (somebody/something) (from somebody/something) to take and use somebody/something that belongs to somebody/something else, especially in a secret, dishonest or unfair way The company poached the contract from their main rivals. Several of our employees have been poached by a rival firm. I hope I'm not poaching on your territory (= doing something that is actually your responsibility).
  5. Word Origin senses 1 to 2 late Middle English: from Old French pochier, earlier in the sense ‘enclose in a bag’, from poche ‘bag, pocket’. senses 3 to 4 early 16th cent. (in the sense ‘push roughly together’): apparently related to poke; perhaps partly from French pocher ‘enclose in a bag’, from poche ‘bag, pocket’.Extra examples chicken poached in white wine I hope I’m not poaching on your territory. She accused him of poaching her ideas.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: poach