To cook very gently in hot liquid kept just below the boiling point. This is not a great method for everything, but it is great for cooking fish fillets, eggs and boneless chicken that is very tender and flavorful. The trick is to use a flavorful poaching liquid such as a rich stock for chicken or a "court bouillon" for fish and remember to keep the temperature just below a boil for the best results. This method is most well known for salmon, halibut and other fish, but a very similar simmering technique is also the method for famous dishes such as the French pot-au-feu and New England's boiled dinner. Poaching is also great for pears, apples and stone fruits poached in sweet wines or port. Once cooled, they work wonderfully with a little ice cream or mascarpone with honey.
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