Baked Des Moines (Acorn) Squash

To bake Des Moines squash without stuffing, cut the squash in half from stem to blossom end. Remove the seeds and place the halves, cut side down, in a shallow baking dish. Fill the dish with hot water to a depth of 1/2 to 3/4 inch. Bake at 350*F for 30 minutes, then turn the squash over. Place some butter (a teaspoon or so) in each half, sprinkle the insides with salt and pepper, and continue to bake, uncovered, until the squash is tender - 10 to 20 minutes, depending on its size. Brush butter over the sides of the squash two to three times during this period. If you prefer sweet squash, eliminate the salt and pepper and use brown sugar with butter in the squash.