See how to do it

Above is the bottle of Chinese black vinegar she used. You can find Chinese black vinegar at Asian markets. That said, I bet you could substitute any kind of vinegar and it would still taste good. 

The photo above shows the Chinese chili paste I found at my local Asian market that had the chili flakes, Sichuan peppers, and peanuts just like the stuff she brought in her suitcase from China. However, I could not find a jarred version of the past that did not have MSG in it, an ingredient that most Americans I know don't like. So, I'm working on developing a homemade version of this sauce. I'll post when I get it right! In the meantime try substituting 1 Tbsp Sambal Olek chili paste in the recipe, and adding a handful of whole peanuts.