1 medium acorn squash (about 1 pound)
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces and at room temperature
Freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons packed light or dark brown sugar
1. Heat the oven to 400°F and arrange a rack in the middle.
2. Meanwhile, cut the squash in half lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Cut a small slice off the rounded side of each half to stabilize the halves so they sit upright.
3. Place the halves cut-side up on a baking sheet. Using your fingers, coat the flesh of each half with 1 piece of the butter, then season generously with salt and pepper. Divide the sugar and remaining butter pieces between the squash cavities. Roast until fork tender, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.