Place 2 cups of water on stove to begin boiling to cook rice. When it boils, add the rice and reduce heat. Simmer for 50 minutes. If there is any water remaining in the pan after it is cooked, drain it.
Meanwhile, cook chicken in skillet. (You will probably want to add some oil to the pan.) While those are cooking, dice fennel (or celery) and onion.
Remove chicken from pan when just done.
Add butter to skillet and cook fennel (or celery) and onion just until tender-crisp. Combine water and cornstarch and add to fennel and onion mixture. Add soup base, salt, pepper, and milk. Stir often over medium to medium-high heat until it is thickened as you desire. Add rice and chicken to soup. Add Asiago cheese and stir in, or you can use as a garnish. Ladle into serving bowls and top with cilantro, if desired.
Each serving contains: 506 calories, 26 g fat, 141 mg cholesterol, 1046 mg sodium, 477 mg potassium, 35 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 13 g sugar, 34 g protein