Cover raw almonds with cool water and soak for 24 - 48 hours. Drain and rinse.
Combine almonds, 3 cups of water, dates and vanilla in blender. Pulse 5 or 6 times, to break up almonds.
Blend on high speed for two minutes, until mixture becomes white and creamy.
Line strainer with cheesecloth and place in a bowl. Pour blended almond mixture into strainer and allow milk to drain through cheesecloth, into bowl. Gently squeeze cheesecloth, to extract all the liquid. Store for up to 2 days in refrigerator.
Vary amount of water, for thicker or thinner milk. Omit dates and vanilla if desired.